On 15 January, Ghanaian security forces arrested three returnees from Libya for planning a terrorist-related attack. One of the suspects, Ishmael Ali Musa, is alleged to have connections to ISIS in Libya. The men were found to possess grenades, ammunition and explosives, thought smuggled into Ghana from Libya. The arrests are a part of joint military and police “intelligence-led operations” focusing on Ghanaian returnees with possible links to IS in Libya.
On 19 January, the al-Bunyan al-Marsous Sirte Security Force deputy commander, Ali Rafida, announced they had been tracking IS fighters for three days in the valleys south of Sirte.
On January 20 and 21, the Libyan National Army’s (LNA) 321 Battalion and the Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council (DMSC) were reportedly shelling each other in the southern districts of Derna. The 321 Battalion are also said to have been firing heavy artillery on the western entrance of the city. The escalation of fighting follows the DMSC advance into areas once controlled by the LNA.
A weekly update of ISIS’s actions, the Western response, and developments pertaining to Libya’s other militias is available by subscribing here. To read about Western countries’ responses to ISIS in Libya this week, click here. To read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.