Benghazi arrests of Gaem supporters including journalist and former minister

By Libya Herald reporters.

Arrested former Thinni minister Omar Sinki (File photo)

Arrested former Thinni minister Omar Sinki (File photo)

Benghazi, 14 November 2017:

A former interior minister and a journalist are among an as yet unknown number of supposed supporters of the Government of National Accord (GNA) deputy interior minister Faraj Al-Gaem who have have been arrested in the past 24 hours in Benghazi.

Omar Sinki, an interim government interior minister whom premier Abdullah Al-Thinni fired two years ago  as “incapable” is still thought to be in custody.

However it is understood that Libya Channel journalist Bader Al-Rahbi was subsequently released. Rahbi had apparently been using his social media blog to put up messages supporting Gaem.  There are unconfirmed reports that the TV channel’s Benghazi office has been ordered to close. Founded in 2015 and broadcasting from Amman in Jordan, the station has been seen as broadly sympathetic to the House of Representatives.

Intelligence chief Salah Bolgheib (Photo: social media)

Intelligence chief Salah Bulgheib (Photo: social media)

In a related move, the Libyan National Army’s directorate of military intelligence has ordered that an irregular information gathering force, set up by Salah Bulgheib, should be absorped into its main intelligence unit.  Bolgheib is apparently seen as a Gaem supporter as well as close to GNA defence minister Mahdi Al-Barghathi, who is from the east.

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