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Appointment of anti-LNA commander in southern Libya indicates Tripoli’s intent to recover territory taken by the LNA

07 February 2019
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On 6 February, the Prime Minister of the UN-sponsored Government of National Accord (GNA), Fayez Sarraj, appointed Tuareg militia commander Ali Kanna as the new commander of the southern military zone, comprising much of the Fezzan region.

Ali Kanna is known for his opposition to the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Khalifa Haftar, which supports the eastern-based government opposing the GNA. Kanna’s appointment came in the context of a new military operation started on 16 January by the LNA with the stated objective of “purging southern Libya from jihadists and criminal gangs, securing petroleum facilities and tackling the flows of migrants heading northwards to the Mediterranean coast”.

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