Libyan National Army Reinforcing Oil Fields, Pipelines With Special Forces – LNA Spokesman

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik – 01st July, 2020) Libyan National Army (LNA) command has sent reinforcements of special forces to help protect oil fields against the rival Turkish-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), spokesman for the LNA Ahmed al-Mismari told Sputnik.

“The General Staff sent a group from the Department of Special Operations Sa’iqa [Thunderbolts] to reinforce some units in the guard of the oil installations,” al-Mismari.

Al-Mismari explained that although all the strategic points were already guarded, the LNA forces and tribal volunteers manning those points were distributed over large swathes of land around the so-called Oil Crescent in the western part of the Sidra Bay region. The hundreds of kilometers of pipelines between the fields needed special patrols, the spokesman said.

Strategists from the Tobruk-based government have pointed out that GNA forces movements highlight their priority with seizing oil fields and ports under Tobruk’s control.

Libya has been divided for years between the two rival governments seeking to establish control over the entire country. Commander Khalifa Haftar’s army, the LNA, has been laying siege to the capital of Tripoli since the spring of 2019 in a bid to capture the seat of the GNA.

In recent weeks, troops affiliated with the GNA have made major military gains against Haftar’s army. The western-based government backed by Turkey and Qatar has said that it wants to seize the strategic city of Sirte, currently under the control of Haftar’s forces.

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