Unconfirmed reports claim that the Khalifa Haftar-led Libyan National Army (LNA) has captured the non-operational Tripoli International Airport (TIP) from Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA)-aligned forces with little resistance on Friday, April 5. Such claims follow earlier reports that the sides clashed on the road south of the airport on Friday afternoon (local time). Mitiga International Airport (MJI) remains open and operational as of Friday.
Additional clashes are likely in the Tripoli area over the coming hours and days, though local reporting suggests that it is not in Haftar's interest to trigger widespread conflict in the capital as it would undermine his cultivated image as a guarantor of security in Libya. A heightened security presence and disruptions to movement are nonetheless to be expected in Tripoli amid the state of emergency declared over the capital by GNA Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj on Thursday, April 4, following the LNA's announcement that they would advance on GNA-aligned positions in Tripolitania region.
The LNA advance comes ahead of expected unity government negotiations set to take place during the National Conference in Ghadames on April 14-16.
Libya has been divided by rival governments and factions with their own militias and political parties since the 2011 uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi. The security situation in Libya remains precarious and the country is likely to remain unstable in the near term amid the ongoing civil war.
Individuals in Tripoli are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid the affected area, and refrain from nonessential movement within the city.
The security environment in Libya remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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