Libya's GNA army moves forward after Egypt's defeat


Former Libyan parliamentarian Aguila Saleh has come to Moscow for talks as government forces move towards Sirte.


Libyan fighters, allied with the country's internationally recognized government, have recently benefited from the re-mobilized military commander Khalifa Hafar by withdrawing forces on the battlefield and around the capital Tripoli. The city has made progress.

Libyan eastern parliament speaker and Hafta ally Aguila Saleh arrived in Moscow, Russia's capital, on Monday's push for talks with Prime Minister Fayaz al-Sarraz.

Tripoli Interior Minister Fathi Bashaga said the government side would engage in political dialogue once the Jafra airbase was moved inland and south.

According to a statement posted by Tripoli-Allied Forces spokesman Mohammed Gono, al-Sarraz urged his troops to "move" towards Sirte. Footage of tanks and vehicles allegedly caught on the outskirts of Zhao Sirte has been posted.

Haftar's military media unit said, however, that his army destroyed a military-equipped houser and tanks-built tank, as well as a bus carrying Turkish troops and Syrian mercenaries from Tripoli Militia. Support

Two Sirte residents said at least eight civilians were killed and six wounded on Monday by the Tripoli Militia in the town of Talatane, about 30 kilometers (18 miles) west of Sirte. Residents have put the anonymous situation in fear of anonymity. No immediate comment from Tripoli Militia.

The Libyan Red Crescent in Sirte said seven of the dead were families.

'Important Benefits'

Egypt's unilateral ceasefire over the weekend - backed by rival Libyan forces, led by Hafta and campaigned year-round to capture Tripoli - was rejected by Libya's UN-accredited government (GNA).

Turkey-backed Tripoli Militia gained the upper hand last week after exiting the capital's airport, all major entrances and exit points and major cities in the city, and then had to withdraw Haider's fighters - an arch that defeated his command. Measures to facilitate the UN-backed peace process.

On Monday, Haftar's forces marched towards Sirte, the strategic city for the GNA.

Reporting from Al Jazeera's Malik Trina, 140km (87 miles) west of Sirte, "I spoke to [GNA] military leaders here and they told me they had a significant gain yesterday."

"They entered the western gate of Sirte ... and controlled the area. They also entered Wadi al-Zarif, south of Sirte."

"From what our sources have said, many of the forces loyal to Hafar have returned to eastern Libya, but remain a force in Sirte. And if they continue to fight, we will have to find out."

To the east of the Mediterranean coastal city of Sirte is the main gateway to the country's major oil fields, which are still occupied by Haftar forces.

The move to Sirte opens the way for Tripoli-affiliated fighters, who will press further afield and establish control over important oil installations, terminals, and oil fields, which closed earlier this year. Granted, it cut Libya's major sources of income.

Moscow conference

On Saturday, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi proposed a ceasefire from Monday, which was accepted by Haftar and Saleh but rejected by the GNA.

UAE Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash tweeted on Monday, "This effort strengthens Arab and international momentum for an immediate ceasefire, withdrawal of foreign troops and political return".

Libya's eastern bases are supported by France and Russia, along with the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

Saleh recently quoted Russia as saying it wants to restart talks with the Tripoli government because it does not see positive results for Hafar's attack.

Mahmoud Abdelwahid of Al Jazeera reported from Tripoli: "Russia or Tripoli have not yet announced this potential meeting in Moscow.

Sami Hamadi, editor-in-chief of London's risk consulting group The International Interest, said Russia was seeking a political solution that would include all struggling facts.

"I think Russia is trying to reduce the power of the Hafters but has not completely got rid of it," he told Al Jazeera.

"Al-Sarraz is in an awkward position. If he looks forward to negotiations, he will lose nationally, but if he does not go to these talks he is at risk of losing Turkish support and the general leadership of the GNA."

'Reckless Adventure'

Libya has been in turmoil since 2011, after the death of longtime dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

Hafta - a 76-year-old former Gaddafi loyal defender who has spent years in the United States - has vowed to rule Libya as a whole.

Tarek Meghesi, a fellow of the European Council on Foreign Relations, said Egypt was suffering from "negligent exploits" of the Hafters.

"Egypt has direct security interests in Libya and it is very important for them to have a security partner to work in East Libya, so they are very concerned," he said.

However, Egypt is still "diplomatically investing in promoting the Haftar project, providing political support, and supporting its war effort," Megarisi said.

But at the same t

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