By Libya Herald reporter.
Tunis, 20 November 2014:
Prominent Libyan figures have lashed out at the US and UK, accusing them of failing to . . .[restrict]show support for the Libyan Army and the country’s fight against terrorism.
The Libyan ambassador to the UN Ibrahim Dabbashi has said that the recent statement released by the House of Representatives again declaring that Operation Dignity was part of the armed forces was a reaction to some foreign countries who still doubted that Khalifa Hafter and Dignity were really under full control of the state.
He singled out the UK and US as showing unwillingness to support the Libyan Army in its fight against terrorism and, according to the Cairo-based Libya news agency Bawabat Alwasat: “If they are serious about fighting terrorism, Libya is already doing this now.” He added that no foreign country had the right to impose its ideas on who should lead the Libyan army in its fight against terrorism.
Debbashi called on the UK and the US to review their positions and make it clear they were with the Libyan people. Otherwise they ran the risk of losing their credibility with their claims of being committed to fighting terrorism, he said.
Former leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) and current senior analyst at the Quilliam Foundation – a UK-based think-tank that focuses on “counter-extremeism” – Noman Benotman echoed Debbashi’s sentiments when he launched a tirade against the UK and US on an interview with Saudi-based channel Al-Arabiya. He urged the two countries to change both their attitude towards and actions on Libya.
If the US and UK had shown a different attitude, the situation in Tripoli would be very different because the extremists would be weakened, “like kittens”, Benotman said. “It’s not the fault of the thuwar from Misrata,” he said, “they have been misled by these countries.” He added that the terrible thing was that the thuwar were unaware of how the UK and US talked about them behind their backs.
Benotman said he was speaking out after receiving some “very bad news” about what Western countries were planning with regard to Libya, which made him very nervous. “I have to tell the truth, now and before God,” he said. “I have to be honest with the Libyan people.” [/restrict]