By Moutaz Ali.
Tripoli, 25 June 2016:
Khalifa Hafter has offered an unexpected olive branch to Mistrata while saying it would never be possible to make any peace with the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group.
The armed forces commander-in-chief told social activists in Benghazi yesterday that he believed the majority of Misratans wanted peace. They had been fooled by militia commanders who claimed to represent the city.
“We all have relatives, friends and business partners in Misrata, ” he said, “ and we will never let them down”.
Hafter also said that he believed that the army could work with some militia leaders in Tripoli. He named Abdulrauf Kara, leader of the Rada secutiy force, Haithem Tajouri head of the Tripoli Revolutionaries’ Brigade and Abdul Ghani Al-Kikli (a.k.a. Ghneiwa). It would be possible, he said to lend them a hand and cooperate with them in establishing security in Tripoli, adding: “but in a limited way”.
However, he said that there was no chance of any kind of compromise with the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group. Their ideology meant that they and their affiliates would not work with others and peace with them would be impossible. “They are just an extension of Al-Qaeda” he said, “ but with a different name”.