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An Escalation in Tripoli Pushes Libya to the Brink of Open War

Apr 16, 2019 | 10:30 GMT
The Libyan National Army's recent ambush on the country's capital has likely shattered the possibility of peace talks any time soon.

The latest round of fighting between Libya's Government of National Accord and the Libyan National Army near Tripoli has killed 121 people as of April 14, 2019.

(MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)

Libya is, once again, teetering on the edge of full-scale civil war. On April 4, Field Marshal Khalifa Hifter and his Libyan National Army (LNA) launched an offensive against Tripoli, likely as a ploy to gain an unassailable position before his rivals with the Government of National Accord (GNA) could respond. But it appears Hifter may have underestimated his enemy, as his attack was quickly met with a fierce and unified resistance. The best case scenario at present for the prevention of further escalation and the resurgence of the Islamic State is a cease-fire between Hifter's LNA and the pro-GNA militias. Otherwise, the conflict in Tripoli will likely remain a stalemate as the civil war risks spreading to other parts of the country. But getting Hifter to accept a cease-fire -- even one backed by his loyal foreign supporters -- will be easier said than done, given the doctrine he...

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