Libya’s Derna bombarded again: Witnesses
Warplanes have reportedly launched airstrikes on the Libyan city of Derna, days after Egyptian jets pounded alleged terrorist training camps in the city.
According to the residents who witnessed the airstrikes, one attack hit the western entrance to Derna, in eastern Libya, and the other two hit Dahr al-Hamar, in the south, on Monday, Reuters reported.
It is not clear who launched the airstrikes.
The city was bombed by Egyptian fighter jets on Friday, just hours after unknown gunmen attacked a bus carrying Coptic Christians south of the Egyptian capital, Cairo, and killed at least 28 people.
The Takfiri Daesh terror group claimed responsibility for the attack in Egypt. The group also claimed two church bombings that killed at least 45 people in Egypt last month.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi declared on Friday that he had directed the airstrikes against “terrorist camps,” and warned that countries that support terrorism would be punished.
“Egypt will never hesitate to strike terror camps anywhere… if it plans attacking Egypt whether inside or outside the country,” he said.
Critics, however, say airstrikes alone will not remove terrorists from Libya. They say the conflict in the North African country would be resolved only if the two rival governments in Libya reached an agreement and jointly focused on eliminating Daesh.
Libya has faced a power vacuum since a US-led military intervention resulted in the downfall of its longtime dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, in 2011. The country has been grappling with chaos and the emergence of numerous militant groups, including Daesh.
The country currently has two governments, one based in the capital, Tripoli, and the other based in the far east, in the city of Tobruk. The United Nations supervised a series of negotiations in 2015 that led to the establishment of a Government of National Accord late that year. But the split in the country continues.