Heavy Clashes in Southern Libya’s Gharyan as Haftar’s Forces Advance under Air Cover

The forces under the command of Khalifa Haftar have started a large-scale attack on Gharyan in an attempt to retake the city that they have lost to the forces under the command of the Government of National Accord’s Burkan Al-Ghadab Operation (Volcano of Rage).

The Libyan Volcano of Rage Operation of the GNA seized control of Gharyan about two months ago, delivering a blow to Haftar’s forces who were using the city as the control room for their fighting operations in southern Tripoli.

Two days ago, Haftar’s forces launched a fresh attack on Gharyan via Ghout Al-Reeh area between Gharyan and Urban districts, and local news say there are fierce clashes ongoing between GNA and Haftar’s forces in there with an airpower cover for Haftar’s forces present.

No official statements have been made by either side yet about the new advance on Gharyan.

The commander of Gharyan Protection Force Abdullah Kishlaf said Haftar’s forces had attacked from Ghout Al-Reeh area coming from Al-Urban under an air cover, adding that they foiled their attacks then withdrew from Ghout Al-Reeh as it is an easy target for Haftar’s warplanes, given the nature of the area.

He reaffirmed that western military zone had sent backup forces so that Gharyan and its surrounding were secured, saying the city is not in danger and the area they had withdrawn from for tactical purposes was very far from Gharyan.

In the meantime, a source from Volcano of Rage Operation said earlier that Haftar’s drones carried heavy airstrikes on Ghout Al-Reeh three days ago at night to pave the way for the ground advance for “Haftar’s forces backed by mercenaries from Sudanese Janjawid.”

The source said their forces withdrew from Ghout Al-Reeh to save lives as UAE drones were targeting the area for Haftar’s forces, confirming that seven fighters from their side had been killed in the airstrikes.

Meanwhile, media sources said the Libyan Army under the command of Presidential Council’s government thwarted an attack by Haftar’s forces on Wadi Rabea frontline and Zatarna area, causing them massive losses, adding that they are preparing for a large-scale offensive that aims to defeat Haftar’s forces once and for all.