Latest Libya news

  • Tunisian militant chief probably died in U.S. air strike - source 11 hours ago

    A veteran Tunisian militant was probably killed by a U.S. air strike on a jihadist meeting in Libya last month whose main target was a top Algerian fighter, a U.S. official said on Friday. Tunisian Saifallah Benhassine, also known as Abu Iyad, was a major figure among militant Islamists in North Africa. The U.S. official, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said he was thought to have died in the June 13 strike on Ajdabiya city near Benghazi. More »

  • Top Tunisian jihadist killed by US strike in Libya: report
    Top Tunisian jihadist killed by US strike in Libya: report 17 hours ago

    A top Tunisian jihadist and associate of late Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed by a US airstrike in Libya last month, The New York Times reported Friday. More »

  • Senior Islamic State leader killed in U.S.-led coalition strike Fri, Jul 3, 2015

    The U.S. military said on Thursday a coalition airstrike in Syria killed a senior Islamic State leader who helped fundraise, secure arms and transport fighters for the militant group. The June 16 strike killed Tariq bin Tahar al-'Awni al-Harzi, the Pentagon said, identifying him as the brother of another fighter linked to the 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. "His death will impact ISIL's ability to integrate foreign terrorist fighters into the Syrian and Iraqi fight as well as to move people and equipment across the border between Syria and Iraq," said Captain Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, using an acronym for Islamic State. More »

  • Terrorists in Tunisia attacks trained at Islamic State camp in Libya Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    The Tunisian terrorist who gunned down scores of mostly British tourists at a Tunisian beach resort last week trained at an Islamic State-affiliated camp in neighboring war-torn Libya. The radicalized student responsible for the beach massacre and the Tunisian gunmen in the Bardo attack are believed to have received weapons training, and ideological indoctrination at a jihadist camp in Libya at the same time in January, Tunisian security officials said Thursday. The link between deadly attacks in Tunisia and terrorist training camps in Libya underscores the threat that chaotic and lawless lands prone to jihadist infiltration are posing to weak governments across the Middle East as they try to provide security and order. More »

  • US drone strike kills Islamic State leader Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) — A coalition airstrike in Syria has killed a senior Islamic State leader, who has been responsible for moving fighters and weapons from Libya to Syria, the Pentagon said Thursday. More »

  • U.N. talks on Libya stumble as rival govt postpones participation Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    By Aziz El Yaakoubi RABAT (Reuters) - U.N.-brokered talks between Libya's two rival governments hit a setback on Thursday when one of the sides stayed away from the negotiations in Morocco, saying it needed more time for consultations. An armed alliance known as Libya Dawn took over the capital Tripoli and declared its own government last year, driving out the internationally recognised one and deepening anarchy and division in the oil-producing North African country. "The draft did not include substantive amendments made by the GNC," its spokesman, Omar Humaidan, said in a televised statement. More »

  • Islamic State: What Is Its Real Agenda?
    Islamic State: What Is Its Real Agenda? Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    Islamic State has attracted huge international attention with its campaign of terror across the Middle East and beyond - but what is the group really hoping to achieve? In what appears to be an international offensive timed to coincide with Ramadan, IS has staged spectacular and deadly attacks across no less than 11 countries - Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Nigeria. More »

  • Islamic State looting Syrian, Iraqi sites on industrial scale -UNESCO Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    By Andrew Osborn LONDON (Reuters) - Islamic State militants are looting ancient sites across Iraq and Syria on an industrial scale and selling on treasures to middlemen to raise cash, Irina Bokova, the head of the U.N. cultural agency UNESCO said on Thursday. One fifth of Iraq's about 10,000 official world-renowned sites have were Islamic State control and heavily looted, and it was unclear what was happening in "thousands more" areas, Bokova told a meeting of experts in London. Some sites in Syria had been ransacked so badly they no longer had any value for historians and archaeologists, and UNESCO was also increasingly worried about Libya, she said. More »

  • Gulf states tighten security for frightened Shi'ites after mosque blast …
    Gulf states tighten security for frightened Shi'ites after mosque blast … Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    By Sami Aboudi and Taghreed Almadani DUBAI (Reuters) - It may have been a prank, albeit a malevolent one, or a genuine threat of violence, when flyers featuring the Islamic State flag were placed near a Shi'ite Muslim mosque in Bahrain this week. The Shi'ite community - a minority in most Gulf Arab states but the majority in Bahrain and some eastern parts of Saudi Arabia - has worked hard, often with local security forces, to step up security and calm communal relations. In Kuwait and in Bahrain, Sunnis and Shi'ites will pray together in main mosques, as a sign of national unity and in a challenge to the militant group, which is expanding, notably in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, from its strongholds in Iraq and Syria. More »

  • Tunisia hunts for Libya-trained suspects after hotel attack
    Tunisia hunts for Libya-trained suspects after hotel attack Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    By Tarek Amara TUNIS (Reuters) - Tunisian authorities were on Thursday hunting further suspects in the Sousse hotel attack identified by officials as part of a group trained in a Libyan jihadist camp alongside gunmen who carried out a massacre at a Tunis museum. In March, two gunmen killed 21 people at the Tunis Bardo museum, before they were also shot. Authorities say suspects in both attacks were trained in military tactics across the border in Libya, where several Islamist armed groups have profited from the country's political chaos to expand their influence and set up base. More »

  • Tunisia Beach Attack: 8 Suspects Face Charges
    Tunisia Beach Attack: 8 Suspects Face Charges Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    Tunisia's government had earlier said 12 suspects had been detained, but four have since been released. The country's authorities also revealed they were hunting two more militants who trained in Libya with the men who carried out last Friday's killings and those at the Bardo Museum in March. Lazhar Akremi, minister for parliamentary relations, said: "This is a group who were trained in Libya, and who had the same objective. More »

  • Benghazi, where Libya's uprising began, now a shattered city
    Benghazi, where Libya's uprising began, now a shattered city Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) — The old courthouse in central Benghazi, Libya's second-largest city and the birthplace of the uprising against Moammar Gadhafi, is a shelled-out ruin — a testimony to the destruction and chaos that permeate this North African country four years after the civil war that ousted the longtime dictator. More »

  • Libya peace talks stall again despite UN sanctions threat
    Libya peace talks stall again despite UN sanctions threat Thu, Jul 2, 2015

    Libya's rival governments will not return to peace talks this week after rebel forces rejected the latest proposal, defying threats the UN Security Council would impose sanctions on anyone who stands in the way of a deal. More »

  • Libya's internationally accepted PM 'aspires' to peace deal Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    VALLETTA, Malta (AP) — The internationally recognized prime minister of Libya says he is "aspiring" to sign a peace agreement with representatives of the rival Islamist-led Tripoli government in Morocco on Thursday. More »

  • Libyan PM hopes for agreement with rivals on Thursday
    Libyan PM hopes for agreement with rivals on Thursday Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    The internationally recognised prime minister of Libya said he hoped to reach a power-sharing peace agreement on Thursday with his rivals during U.N.-backed talks that seek to end a conflict that threatens to break up the country. Libya has two governments and parliaments, with the recognised government operating out of the country's east since an armed alliance known as Libya Dawn took over the capital Tripoli, in the west, and declared its own government last year. Abdullah al-Thinni, who leads the government based in the eastern city of Tobruk, flew to Malta on Wednesday for talks with the Maltese prime minister, Joseph Muscat. More »

  • No Lone Wolf: Beach Killer In Five-Man Cell
    No Lone Wolf: Beach Killer In Five-Man Cell Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    Tunisian mass murderer Seifeddine Rezgui was part of a five-man terror cell operating out of the ancient Islamic city of Kairouan for the last four years, Sky News can reveal. At least two members of the cell trained and fought in Syria, while Rezgui is believed to have spent four months in Libya at an Islamic State training camp before being sent to attack westerners in Tunisia. It is here that Rezgui became enrolled in a programme of intense jihadi indoctrination leading to training and ultimately his horrendous terror attack on the beaches of Tunisia's Mediterranean seashore. More »

  • Tunisia says hotel attacker trained in Libya
    Tunisia says hotel attacker trained in Libya Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    Officials say Saif Rezgui, shot dead after killing 38 in beach resort, was in Libya at same time as Bardo museum gunmen. More »

  • Italy recovers first bodies from deadliest migrant shipwreck Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    Italy's navy said on Tuesday it had retrieved the first bodies from the wreck of a boat that sank in the Mediterranean three months ago, killing up to 800 migrants attempting to cross from Libya to Europe. Recovery operations started on Monday, using remote-controlled vehicles and a container called a "Big Bag" in a submersible basket to haul the bodies up from the fishing boat, which is lying at a depth of about 370 metres (1,200 feet). The disaster, believed to be the worst in decades of perilous sea-borne migration from North Africa, has shocked the European Union into expanding rescue operations. More »

  • APNewsBreak: Tunisia beach killer trained with museum gunmen
    APNewsBreak: Tunisia beach killer trained with museum gunmen Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — The student who massacred tourists in a Tunisian seaside resort trained in a jihadi camp in Libya at the same time as the two men who attacked a leading museum in March, a top security official said Tuesday, enforcing the notion of a link between the two assaults and raising fears of more attacks from an underground world clawing at this North African nation's budding democracy. More »

  • Tunisia hotel gunman trained in Libya jihadist camp - government
    Tunisia hotel gunman trained in Libya jihadist camp - government Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    By Tarek Amara TUNIS (Reuters) - The Tunisian gunman who carried out a deadly attack on a hotel last Friday trained in a jihadist camp in Libya last year, Tunisia's government said on Tuesday. The death toll from the assault on the Imperial Marhaba beach hotel in the popular resort town of Sousse was revised down on Tuesday to 38 from a previously given 39. A spokesman for the prime minister said Saif Rezgui, who was killed by police following the rampage, was in Libya at the same time as two Tunisian gunmen who subsequently stormed the Tunis Bardo museum in March. More »

  • Tunisia says resort gunman was trained in Libya
    Tunisia says resort gunman was trained in Libya Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    The gunman who killed 38 tourists in Tunisia received weapons training from jihadists in Libya, a top official said Tuesday, as the president admitted security services were unprepared for the attack. More »

  • Tunisia hotel attack gunman trained in Libya - official Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    The Tunisian gunman who carried out the hotel attack last Friday that killed 38 people, mostly British tourists, trained in a jihadist camp in Libya at the end of last year, Tunisian prime minister's spokesman Dafer Neji said on Tuesday. Neji said investigations showed Saif Rezgui, a student who was shot by police during Friday's attack on the resort town of Sousse, was in Libya at the same time as the two Tunisian gunmen who attacked the Tunis Bardo museum in March. More »

  • 'IS spread' sowed seeds in Tunisia
    'IS spread' sowed seeds in Tunisia Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    The spread of Islamic State (IS) into Libya helped sow the seeds for the Tunisia beach attack, the Foreign Secretary has said. More »

  • Ethiopia mulls tough trafficking law, including death penalty Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    By Aaron Maasho ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Human traffickers in Ethiopia could face life in jail or the death penalty under a bill presented to parliament on Tuesday aimed at curbing the illegal flow of people in and out of the Horn of Africa country. The move comes two months after at least 30 Ethiopian migrants were shot and killed by Islamic State militants in Libya and after others have died while heading to Europe on rickety boats across the Mediterranean. The legislation, proposed by the Ministry of Justice, contains a range of penalties for trafficking and smuggling including fines of up to 500,000 birr ($7,500) and the death penalty in cases where victims suffer severe injury or death. More »

  • IS in Libya 'threatens neighbours'
    IS in Libya 'threatens neighbours' Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    The spread of Islamic State into the "ungoverned territory" of Libya helped sow the seeds for the atrocity which left up to 30 Britons dead at a Tunisian beach resort, Philip Hammond said. More »

  • 21 Libyan soldiers die in fighting with Islamists: medic
    21 Libyan soldiers die in fighting with Islamists: medic Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    Fighting raged between government forces and Islamists in eastern Libya on Tuesday, with 21 soldiers killed since the clashes broke out at the weekend, a medical official said. More »

  • Tunisian official says beach gunman trained in Libya, at the same time as museum … Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisian official says beach gunman trained in Libya, at the same time as museum attacker. More »

  • Tunisia arrests suspects associated with beach hotel attacker
    Tunisia arrests suspects associated with beach hotel attacker Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    By Patrick Markey and Tarek Amara SOUSSE, Tunisia (Reuters) - Tunisian authorities have arrested a group of suspects associated with the gunman who killed 39 people, mainly British tourists, in a beach hotel attack claimed by Islamic State, the interior minister said on Monday. British interior minister Theresa May, and her French and German counterparts, visited the site of the attack near the Imperial Marhaba hotel in the resort town of Sousse, laying flowers on the beach. Interior Minister Najem Gharsalli gave no details of those arrested and said officials were checking whether gunman Saif Rezgui had been trained in neighbouring Libya in jihadist camps. More »

  • Italy begins to recover hundreds of migrant bodies from shipwreck Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    By Steve Scherer ROME (Reuters) - Italy's navy said on Monday it had begun to recover the bodies of up to 800 migrants from a fishing boat that sank in the Mediterranean three months ago, a tragedy that prompted the European Union to expand sea rescue operations. The 20-metre fishing boat capsized and sank in April as it approached a merchant ship that had come to its aid. Three navy ships and remote-controlled submersibles have been used to take bodies from the sea bed near the shipwreck, which is about 135 km (85 miles) north of Libya at a depth of about 370 metres (1,214 ft), the navy said in a statement. More »

  • Libyan factions sit at the same table in U.N. peace talks
    Libyan factions sit at the same table in U.N. peace talks Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    By Aziz El Yaakoubi SKHIRAT, Morocco (Reuters) - Officials from Libya's rival parliaments sat at the same table for the first time on Sunday at the latest round of United Nations-backed peace talks in Morocco, a move negotiators saw as an important step to forming a unity government. Sixteen soldiers of the Libyan National Army (LNA) were killed on Sunday in clashes with the Al-Qaeda-linked group Abu Salem Brigades, an army spokesman said. Libya has two governments and parliaments, with the internationally recognised government operating out of the country's east since an armed alliance known as Libya Dawn took over the capital Tripoli and declared its own government last year. More »

  • Italy rescues thousands of migrants from smuggler boats
    Italy rescues thousands of migrants from smuggler boats Sun, Jun 28, 2015

    Italian, Irish and UK ships rescue 2,900 migrants from 21 boats launched by smugglers in Mediterranean, north of Libya. More »

  • Unsolved mystery: Possible military aspects of Iran's atomic past Sun, Jun 28, 2015

    By Shadia Nasralla VIENNA (Reuters) - As nuclear talks with Iran approach a Tuesday deadline, some Western diplomats say questions about the country's atomic past ought to be resolved before sanctions can be lifted. Although Iran has not broken any terms of a 2013 interim deal, the U.N.'s nuclear agency has repeatedly asked Iran to cooperate faster with its investigation into possible military dimensions of the country's atomic programme. Below are the key unanswered questions raised by the IAEA, which mostly refer to activities that took place before 2003.     BACKGROUND     Iran acquired some enrichment knowledge from Pakistani nuclear engineer Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan's atomic weapons programme, who confessed to providing assistance to Libya, Iran and North Korea.     Some intelligence also came from a laptop smuggled out of Iran.     Iran says all of the alleged evidence is forged and dismisses any charges that it was attempting to develop nuclear weapons. More »

  • Tunisia to deploy hundreds of police inside hotels
    Tunisia to deploy hundreds of police inside hotels Sun, Jun 28, 2015

    Government also confirms it will stop all Tunisian men below the age of 35 from travelling to Libya after Sousse attack. More »

  • Missing Clinton emails likely to raise new questions
    Missing Clinton emails likely to raise new questions Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department cannot find in its records all or part of 15 work-related emails from Hillary Rodham Clinton's private server that were released this week by a House panel investigating the 2012 attack in Benghazi, Libya, officials said. More »

  • Libya talks at crucial stage over power-sharing deal Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    By Aziz El Yaakoubi SKHIRATE, Morocco (Reuters) - Libya's two main rival factions restarted U.N.-backed peace talks in Morocco on Friday with negotiations at a crucial stage over a power-sharing proposal that negotiators call the best chance for peace. Four years after an uprising ousted strongman Muammar Gaddafi, Western and regional powers are pushing for an end to fighting between the two competing governments vying for control of the North African country and its oil. Nearly three weeks after U.N. envoy Bernardino Leon handed them a final draft, negotiating teams were in Morocco to hammer out amendments, even as hardliners on the ground kept fighting for a military victory. More »