Sirte military commander “arrested” by brigade: report
Tripoli, 7 February 2013:
The military commander of Sirte, Colonel Omar Abdessalam Al-Hasnawi, was “arrested” today, Thursday, by members of the Zawia Martyrs’ Brigade, according to the Libyan news agency, LANA.
No reason has been given. A unit of the brigade has been stationed in Sirte for some time.
The town’s Congress member Abdul Jalil Eshawesh has condemned the action, telling LANA that other Congressmen were shocked as well.
Hasnawi was appointed to the post by Chief of Staff Yousef Mangoush just over a month ago after violence and rising crime in the town had forced the authorities to impose a curfew for 10 days.
On 7 January, clashes were reported south of the town between the brigade and Libya Shield forces. However, these were denied two days later by the brigade’s commander, Lieutenant Colonel Abdullah Buhaliga, who accused the media of trying to destabilise the country.
One of the tasks entrusted to Hasnawi by Manhoush was to bring the army, the National Security Directorate and militias together to form a joint operations centre for Sirte.
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