Egypt asks anti-ISIS coalition to intervene in Libya

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (C), surrounded by top military generals, attending an emergency meeting in Cairo on February 15, 2015 of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.. (AFP)

Egypt asked the international coalition against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) to extend their operations to Libya, a day after the group released a video claiming to show the execution of 21 Egyptian Copts there.

“Egypt renews its call for the international coalition against the Da’esh terrorist organization ... to take the necessary measures to confront the terrorist Da’esh organization and other similar terrorist organizations on Libyan territories,” the foreign ministry said in a statement, using an Arabic acronym for the group.

The ministry said it has kicked off international diplomatic efforts to highlight the dangers posed by Libyan militants to regional and global security.

Meanwhile, Libya's internationally recognized prime minister called for the West to launch air strikes to defeat ISIS militants who he said control Tripoli and have driven his government out of the capital.

Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni made a plea for Western military intervention in a country rapidly slipping into chaos.

"We have absolutely confirmed information that al-Qaeda and ISIS are in Tripoli and....near Ben Jawad," he said, referring to a central town controlled by a faction that supports a rival government.

"I ask world powers stand by Libya and launch military strikes against these groups," he said. "This threat will move to European countries, especially Italy."

Thinni, the internationally recognized premier, has been based in the east of the country since an armed group called Libya Dawn seized the capital in August. Libyan Dawn includes Islamists but denies that it has links to al-Qaeda or to fighters that have sworn allegiance to ISIS.

The North African country is in chaos as two rival governments and parliaments allied to separate armed factions fight for territory, four years after NATO war planes helped topple dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

The United Nations has been mediating to avert full-blown civil war in the country. But little progress has been made in talks as the country is dominated by former rebels who helped oust Muammar Qaddafi but now fight each other.


[With Reuters]

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:44 - GMT 06:44
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