On 23 April, Abdullah Dabbashi, a Libyan ISIS leader was reportedly killed in Sabratha while in Benghazi, the LNA claimed that ISIS fighter Mohammed al-Moghrabi had not been executed as thought. A video which purportedly showed the execution of Randa was released on 24 February by the LNA’s Tariq Ibn Ziyad Brigade. The LNA claims it staged his widely condemned execution video as part of an intelligence operation to track and arrest ISIS collaborators in Benghazi. The LNA claims that 54 people have already been detained as a result of Randa’s confessions, reportedly including some LNA fighters who were informing ISIS of the LNA’s movements, and supplying weapons and ammunition to the jihadists.
The Libyan National Army (LNA) has started to build-up its forces in preparation to launch a ‘final’ assault against the jihadists, beginning with intensive airstrikes against their positions every day last week. On 20 April, jihadists in Sabri and Souq al-Hout blew up a bridge providing access to the area in attempt to reinforce their positions against an LNA assault. The first LNA advance into Sabri was made on 21 April, where LNA fighters briefly clashed with the jihadists. In an intelligence operation last week the LNA arrested Hamza Mustafa al-Shelwi, one of the leaders of the Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council (DMSC), in addition to Abdussalam Layas, who is reported to be a former ISIS member.
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.