By Abdulkader Assad
Khalifa Haftar’s forces have announced “Zero Hour” to launch an all-out offensive on Tripoli and try once again to enter the capital, but the forces have been met with fierce defense by the Libyan Army forces under the command of Presidential Council’s government.
Frontlines saw the “Zero Hour” clashes start at 9.00am in the morning on Monday with Haftar’s forces attacking – with air cover – Libyan Army positions on four frontlines, concentrating on Khallit Al-Furjan since it’s the closest to Tripoli’s city center.
“We have foiled the attack of Haftar’s forces and gained advanced positions in certain frontlines as our Air Force had carried out airstrikes on the attacking forces, causing them heavy losses.” Libyan Army and Burkan Al-Ghadab (Volcano of Rage) operation said.
They said three military vehicles were destroyed as Libyan Air Force targeted two tanks on Al-Naher frontline, let alone seizing two military vehicles and capturing 11 mercenaries fighting for Haftar’s forces.
Uneasy calm has descended on fighting frontlines after the Zero Hour offensive was repelled, while Haftar’s media outlets said the general command put off the Zero Hour offensive due to a malfunction in the communications system.
For over a week, the Zero Hour has been the talk of all Haftar’s forces, including his spokesman Ahmed Al-Mismari, who said in a presser that their plan included protecting state institutions and diplomatic missions in Tripoli.
The spokesman for the Libyan Army Mohammed Gununu commented on Al-Mismari’s statement saying; “it is just a media propaganda that aims at putting down Libyan Army forces’ morale.”
Before the Zero Hour, Haftar appointed on Sunday Mabrouk Al-Ghazwi as the commander of Tripoli offensive in place of Abdelsalam Al-Hassi, who is said to be detained in Rajma.
Haftar’s second offensive on Tripoli “Zero Hour Attack” repelled
Over 15 fighters from Haftar’s forces have been killed and over 5 fighters from GNA forces have also been killed in today’s attacks.
Dubbed ‘Zero Hour Attack’, Khalifa Haftar’s second major offensive against Tripoli started early on Monday from over four frontlines in southern Tripoli in an attempt to enter the city center of the Libyan capital.
But few hours into the fierce clashes between Haftar’s forces and the forces of Government of National Accord (GNA), Haftar’s forces suffered major blows to both fighters and military equipment as GNA forces repelled their attacks with an Air cover.
According to a spokesman for the Libyan Army forces under GNA’s command said their forces killed over 15 fighters for Haftar’s forces and injured dozens, destroyed two military vehicles, seized two others and carried out an airstrike on an ammunition vehicle, leaving it in ashes.
Local media reported that the killed and injured fighters of Haftar’s forces were sent to Tarhouna public hospital.
Haftar’s offensive on Tripoli started on April 04. Since then, over 1100 have been killed and 5100 others injured, let alone the destruction of properties, infrastructure, and displacement of over 100.000 people.