By Libya Herald staff,
Benghazi, 17 September 2014:
One of the leaders of the Shoura Council of Islamic Youth in Derna, Salah Benali, . . .[restrict]was killed yesterday fighting with his militia alongside Ansar Al-Sharia and the Benghazi Revolutionaries Shoura Council (BRSC) in their bid to take Benina Airport.
The death has been reportedly been confirmed by an official with the Martyr Rafallah Sahati Brigade, out of which Ansar originally sprung and which is also part of the BRSC.
Contrary to its name which suggests that it is an advisory group, the Shoura Council of Islamic Youth is a militia which was formed at the beginning of April by amalgamating three existing radical Islamist militias in Derna – the Army of the Islamic State of Libya, local members of Ansar Al-Sharia and the private forces of Sufian Ben Qumu, who remains the main political power in the town.
The militia has earned itself a reputation for violence and militancy with some of its members displaying admiration for Al-Qaeda and sporting its black flag. It has carried out at least two public executions in the town which have been condemned as tantamount to murder by Amnesty International.
The Benalis are a prominent local family most of whose members do not support extremism, “We don’t understand why Saleh and his brother were attracted to it,” one family member told the Libya Herald. [/restrict]