By Aymen Amzein.
Benghazi, 22 June 2016:
Following a new offensive in Benghazi today, a top Libyan National Army (LNA) commander who asked not to be named told the Libya Herald that it now has “complete control” of the entire Garyounis district. This followed air strikes in the area today. Reports also speak of there having fierce fighting in the district and elsewhere involving 106 infantry brigade, 309 Tobruk brigade and Battalion 21.
There were, however, continued clashes in Gwarsha as well as Suq Al-Hout and Sabri, the commander said, adding that there had been a lot of damage in Garyounis.
He also added that he anticipated the liberation of the city to be declared by Eid and that, once announced, Benina airport would open immediately.
Repeated declarations of an imminent announcement of the liberation of Benghazi have been made by LNA officials, including Khalifa Hafter, over the past two years.
Despite the statement about all of Garyounis being taken, the LNA is officially reported saying today that it now has 90 percent of it. In other advances, however, it is said to have taken most of the tourist village at Ganfouda.
It reports four soldiers killed and says four soldiers were killed and ten others wounded in today’s fighting.
Throughout much of the day, as yesterday, the sound of what appeared to be drones flying over head could be heard in the city.