Minister Announces Libya’s Armed Groups Will Withdraw from Tripoli After Violent Clashes

Libya’s Interior Minister Imad Trabelsi says that armed groups in Tripoli have agreed to leave the Libyan capital and be replaced with regular forces, following a spate of deadly clashes in which 10 people were killed over the weekend.

During a news conference, Trabelsi stated, “After a month of consultations, we came to an agreement with the security groups that they will leave the capital soon. There will only be city police officers, emergency police, and those who do criminal investigations.”

The agreement will involve several groups, including the General Security Force, the Special Deterrence Force in eastern Tripoli, Brigade 444 in southern Tripoli, Brigade 111, and the Stability Support Authority based in the neighborhood of Abu Salim where the recent killings occurred. These groups, which evolved from the post-revolution security vacuum, have operated independently and were granted special status by the prime minister and the presidential council in 2021.

Trabelsi emphasized that the groups will only be used in exceptional circumstances for specific missions and that their place is in their headquarters. He also expressed the intention to remove armed groups and checkpoints from public roads in other cities, following the resolution in Tripoli.

Libya has been plagued by armed conflict and political turmoil since the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, resulting in a division between the internationally recognized government in Tripoli and an administration in the east led by renegade general Khalifa Haftar.

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