17 prisoners liberated by Haftar’s militia, Libyan

The illegal East-based forces loyal to Putist general Khalifa Haftar have released 17 prisoners from Libya’s western region, the Libyan army said on Saturday.

“Seventeen prisoners held by Haftar’s militias were released,” military spokesman Abdel-Hadi Darah told Anadolu Agency (AA).

He said the prisoners had been handed over to the Libyan army at the al-Khamsin gate, west of the city of Sirte.

“The detainees arrived in Misrata, northwest of Libya, and will be offered medical check-ups before handing them over to their families,” Darah said.

Turkey had backed the internationally recognized Tripoli-based National Accord Government (GNA), against Haftar’s forces, backed by Russia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and France.

On May 6, the Libyan 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission said that 35 prisoners were exchanged between the Libyan government and Haftar’s militias. The mission consists of five leading soldiers from the Libyan government and five others elected by Haftar.

Libya has witnessed a positive development in recent months following a breakthrough after rival parties agreed on 5 February on a unified new executive that will steer Libya ahead of the national elections scheduled for 24 December.

Libyans hope the new government will end years of civil war that have engulfed the country since the overthrow and assassination of Moammar Gadhafi in 2011.

Most recently, the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) has warned rival parties in Libya to refrain from any military mobilization that could hinder the North African country’s path to elections in December.

In a written statement shared on Twitter on Thursday, UNSMIL called on all parties to “refrain from mobilizing or deploying security elements and troops that could be perceived as an escalation and could undermine the implementation of the ceasefire agreement on 23 October 2020.. ”

It further called on all parties to respect the boundaries as they were at the time of the ceasefire agreement.


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