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Libya's Haftar hosts UAE military leader in Benghazi Open in fullscreen

Robert Cusack

Libya's Haftar hosts UAE military leader in Benghazi

The UAE has extensively supported the break-away government [Facebook]

Date of publication: 26 June, 2017

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General Khalifa Haftar invited Major General Eisa Saif al-Mazrouei to his Rajma headquarters in Benghazi to discuss their on-going co-operation.

The military commander of east Libya's break-away government met with the UAE army's deputy chief of staff on Sunday.

General Khalifa Haftar invited Major General Eisa Saif al-Mazrouei to his Rajma headquarters in Benghazi to discuss their on-going co-operation.

A spokesperson said the two generals discussed "the framework of brotherhood and cooperation between Libya and UAE at all levels," on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr.

A June report by the UN's Libya Sanctions Committee said the UAE had been illegally sending arms to General Haftar's forces, regardless of an international arms embargo in place on the country.

Illicit arms sales by UAE, especially Abu Dhabi, helped increase the number of civilian casualties in the conflict, the report also found.

The UAE has been helping General Haftar fight Islamist rebel fighters in the country's east as part of its policy to destroy the Muslim Brotherhood and any Islamist fighting movement.

The UAE, along with Egypt, went as far as waging aerial bombing of targets around Tripoli in August 2014 when Libya Dawn forces were fighting militias aligned with Haftar.

On Friday, Reuters reported that the on-going rift between the UAE and Qatar is being played out on the battlefield in Libya, as both backed different sides in the uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

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