By Ajnadin Mustafa
Tripoli, 25 August 2014:
Zintani sources are claiming that Misratan forces took Tripoli International Airport and their other bases in the . . .[restrict]capital including the headquarters on the Airport Road because the latter welched on a ceasefire deal that would have seen both sides pull out of the city.
The alleged agreement was reached after negotiations between Zintani and Misratan elders, brokered by the House of Representatives with, it is being said, the assistance of the Italians.
Under the deal, the Misratan forces would have withdrawn to Garabulli or Khoms while the Zintanis pulled back around 100 kilometres from the capital.
Last Thursday after bitter fighting, Zintani militias lost control of the Ministry of Interior compound on the Airport Road while local forces allied to them were forced out of the residential areas of Hay Akwakh and Hay Zahur. However, the Zintani source claimed to the Libya Herald that their subsequent withdrawal from all of Tripoli, which he said was in compliance with the orders of the parliament in Tobruk, was voluntary.
That the Mistratans then occupied the vacated positions – and it appears torched Tripoli International Airport – was, he said, a betrayal of the agreement made between all sides. He added that the lack of casualties on Saturday demonstrated that the Zintanis had not been forced out of their positions.
The HoR has confirmed that it gave instructions to both sides to pull back but has made no mention of any ceasefire and withdrawal agreement.
It has not been possible to contact any of the other supposed parties to the deal.