ISIS in ACTION

A suspected Islamic State (ISIS) arms cache containing unguided air-to-ground bombs and fuel was reportedly found by Libyan National Army (LNA) units approximately 90km south of Nawfaliya, a town east of Sirte. On 11 February, Misrata’s Air Academy chief said that ISIS cells are regrouping in the regions south-west of Misrata, near Bani Walid. In Sebha, there were reports of 14 ISIS fighters with five ‘technicals’ –usually pick-up trucks with guns mounted on the back —  changing tyres in a local shop.

The process of resettling displaced families from Sirte is ongoing. On 10 February, the al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) operations room announced the beginning of the second stage of return for Sirte residents in the Third District. On 13 February, BM said that 585 families had returned to the Hay al-Gharbiya area (in the 700 residential area) south of Sirte, while 1025 families returned to the Third Residential area on the coast. However, Sirte remains highly contested in terms of politics and security. On 11 February, Sirte’s mayor and two of his assistants were kidnapped in Tripoli.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS IN ACTION

On 6 February, a video was published on Libyan social media showing the execution of Libyan National Army (LNA) fighter Suliman al-Hoty. His executioner is reportedly a well-known Islamic State (ISIS) fighter from Benghazi. In the video, al-Hoty is filmed inside a small hole. He tells his captor to ‘end it with honour’ then he is shot dead. The video went viral on Libyan social media sparking a wave of anger against Islamist factions and their supporters. The video is being seen as further proof of cooperation between the Benghazi Revolutionary Shura Council (BRSC) and ISIS. This follows the release of a series of videos reportedly found on the phones of dead jihadi fighters after the LNA advance in Ganfuda, which also purport to demonstrate this relationship.

On 4 February, displaced residents of Sirte began returning to the city after the Misratan-led al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) forces gave the all clear. On 31 January, BM published a plan for the return of residents to the city. They divided Sirte into 6 zones. The 700 district, south of the city, is the first return zone. BM forces continued to sweep the area south of Sirte last week for more IEDs and other security threats left behind by ISIS fighters, reclaiming a cache of rockets apparently used by ISIS. BM forces have also been accused of looting and seizing property in the city.here

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

Misratan-led al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) forces reportedly discovered the remains of 90 bodies 45 km south west of Sirte, apparently killed by the US airstrikes launched against ISIS cells on 19 January as a parting move by the Obama administration. The BM fighters reportedly captured two ‘terrorist’ suspects and killed four during the operation. Underground stores and camouflaged hideouts were also discovered.

Sirte is increasingly witnessing a breakdown of security due to widespread looting, burglary and theft of power cables in the city. On 26 January, tribal elders in Sirte accused BM forces (who led the operation against ISIS in the city) of looting the town and seizing local properties. They claim some BM units prevented Sirte residents from returning home by blocking the town’s entrance with sand barriers. The tribal elders also accused BM militias of plundering power cables from the 700 Residence areas to be shipped abroad via Misrata port.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

On 16 January, Brg. Mohammed al-Ghosri, who was last week promoted by the GNA Minister of Defence (MoD) from Head of the BM Operations Room to MoD spokesperson, announced that more than 2,500 bodies of ISIS fighters had been collected from Sirte. He added that hundreds of other bodies may still be under the rubble. Ghosri said that no ISIS members escaped from Sirte during the 8 month siege of the city by BM forces. He concluded that those ISIS fighters who are currently regrouping south of Sirte and in southern Libya were already located out of the BM control perimeter when the Sirte operation began. Ghosri also said he thinks that ISIS proliferation in southern Libya is a real threat, and that a major war in southern Libya is possible if the political situation in Libya remains in limbo.

On 17 January, LNA forces in Nawfaliyah, a town west of Sirte, captured Emhemmed Emrajaa al-Hamali, a senior Libyan ISIS commander from Sirte. Al-Hamali was taken by the LNA, along with his son, to Grenada prison in Benghazi. Al-Hamali was reportedly responsible for attacking Sirte’s Ibn Sina hospital and the Man Made River station. He had been appointed in 2012 to head Sirte’s Supreme Security Committee branch, which became a cover for Ansar al-Sharia in the city.

On 17 January, a convoy of 4 ISIS vehicles reportedly set up a checkpoint along the Man Made River network route at Wadi Bey. A fuel tanker was obstructed, hijacked and transported to an unknown location. The same day, an unexploded IED was found by the bomb disposal unit in Sirte’s first residential area. They successfully defused the device. A suicide belt was also found in one of the farms in al-Gharbiyat area and safely detonated.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS In Action

___

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the EOIL homepage.

 

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

On 3 January, an explosion destroyed an arms cache in Mizdah, a town situated 200km south of Tripoli. The perpetrators are as yet unknown, but ISIS is thought to be implicated. Reports from locals in the area indicate that ISIS fighters are reorganizing in south-western Libya along the Man Made River route between Bani Walid and Sebha. Last week, an attempt was made to sabotage the Man Made River (MMR) pipeline between al-Shuwarif and Bani Walid. The saboteurs used tank shells to blow a hole in the pipeline. There are reports of ISIS mobilizing forces near Bani Walid and Nesmah. In response, a new anti-ISIS tribal coalition has been formed between Awlad Busif, Zintan, and Werfalla in south-west Libya. These tribes are reportedly organizing their ranks to defend their territory from ISIS.

On 4 January, an ISIS fighter from Derna conducted a suicide bombing against Government of National Accord (GNA) aligned al-Bunyan al-Marsus forces in the eastern area of Sirte, however no casualties were reported. On 8 January, an ISIS member captured by the LNA stated on Libyan television that Tunisian journalists Sofiane Chourabi and Nadher Guetari, who have been missing in Libya since 2014, are both dead. Documents found by the LNA during their raids in Ganfuda over the last two weeks appear to show that the decision to kill the journalists was made by ISIS clerics, and that both were executed in Derna.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

Sources report there is evidence of an ISIS presence in the area between Bin Walid, Brak al-Shati and Sebha in southern Libya. ISIS fighters reportedly use the desert roads which connect to the Man Made River pipeline network to move between areas, raid supplies, and establish checkpoints. These ISIS fighters reportedly include high profile leaders who managed to escape from Sirte before or during the Misratan-led offensive against the city. There are also reports that training and base camps have been set up in the desert, although no confirmed reconnaissance evidence has yet verified this information.

In Sirte, Brigade 604, a Salafist brigade nominally affiliated with the Misratan al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) forces, has been tasked with securing the city’s main installations and residential areas.  However, this has caused some tensions within Misrata as this brigade is believed to be close to Haftar. Threats still remain in Sirte from booby traps, IEDs and attacks by any remnant ISIS fighters.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

On 20 and 23 December, ISIS fighters reportedly attacked the main control station of the Man Made River pipe system. The site is located 50km north of the town of al-Shuwarif, situated on the road between Tripoli and Sebha. The site currently lies within the domain of Libyan National Army (LNA) forces who took control of the area two weeks ago, under the command of Colonel Bin Nayel.  ISIS fighters plundered a lot of material from the station before departing. On 25 December, the LNA spokesperson al-Mesmari announced that the LNA had driven the ISIS fighters away and now control the station.

On 21 December, the mayor of Khoms announced that the beheading of a family which took place last month in the town was not done by Islamic State (ISIS) as originally believed. The mayor said that the perpetrator falsely attributed the murder to ISIS by to evade arrest.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanationhere of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001

ISIS in Action

On 17 December, the Government of National Accord’s (GNA) Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj officially declared the military operation against Islamic State (ISIS) in Sirte complete and victorious. Although the city is now under the control of the Misratan-led al-Bunyan al-Marsus (BM) forces, threats still remain from booby traps, IEDs and remnant ISIS fighters. Mine clearance operations are ongoing, as well as the collection of corpses and the sanitisation of the city.

On 12 December, Mukhtar al-Madani was elected by the Sirte Municpal Council as the city’s local mayor. A day later, BM commanders appointed Brigadier Ahmed Abu Shahma as ‘military governor’ of Sirte in an apparent reaction to the election of a ‘pro Haftar’ mayor.

US Africa Command (AFRICOM) said last week that Operation Odyssey Lightening continues despite the official victory against ISIS. According to media reports, AFRICOM is continuing to monitor Sirte and its environs, in coordination with the GNA, and to provide the support needed to clear the city.

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 the Eye on ISIS in Libya Team’s blog post about the actions of other jihadi actors, click here. And to read their explanation of the developments within the anti-ISIS Coalition of Libyan militias, click here.

To read all four sections of this week’s Eye on ISIS in Libya report, click here. To subscribe to receive this report weekly into your inbox, sign up on the subscribe page.

Eye-on-Isis-Logo-001