By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli/Alexandria, 28 May 2017:
Members of Tarhouna’s notorious Kani militia have closed roads leading to Tripoli International Airport following an ultimatum this morning from Tripoli Revolutionaries’ Brigade leader Haithem Tajouri to leave it and return to Tarhouna by tomorrow or face the consequences. He insisted it had to be handed over to the interior and defence ministries.
Yesterday, in what is being is seen as an attempt to distance itself from Friday’s failed Islamist putsch in Tripoli, Tarhouna municipal council issued a statement appearing to indicate that the Kani militia was now supporting the Presidency Council (PC) and its government of national accord (GNA). It said that the 7th Brigade, which hails from the town, had extended it hold over the unusable Tripoli International Airport on behalf of the Presidency Council’s government of national accord (GNA).
The claim caused no small amount of surprise and confusion. The brigade is a rebranding of the Kani Brigade and forces under Ahmed Saadi, brother of former minister for Martyr’s Affairs, Sami Saadi, the leading member of the rejectionist coalition opposed to Presidency Council and the Libyan Political Agreement. Like him, the Kani brigade has been firmly in the rejectionist camp and, far from supporting the GNA, has been part of the Fakhr Libya alliance’s failed but deadly attempt to oust it and take control of Tripoli over the weekend.
In its surprising statement, Tarhouna municipality claimed to have “always been a strong supporter of national reconciliation and of the rule of law,” saying that it supported the army and police and “the fight against all outlaw groups”.
In reality, the municipal council is seen as powerless against the dominant Kani forces.