New Chief-of-Staff for the Libyan Armed Forces

Reuters05.01.2012 Libya
New Chief-of-Staff for the Libyan Armed Forces

New Chief-of-Staff for the Libyan Armed Forces

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Mustafa Abdul Jalil, Chairman of Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC), appointed Yousef al-Manqoush as Head of the Armed Forces in the first significant move to build a new Libyan military and warned that the country could descend into a civil war following deadly clashes in Tripoli.

Manqoush is a Retired Army General who joined efforts to end Muammar Qaddafi’s 42-year rule.

The appointment came after 6 were killed in clashes that erupted in the center of Tripoli on Tuesday between gunmen from Misrata and NTC Forces.

Abdul Jalil warned Libyans that the country could descent into a civil war if they resort to arms to settle their differences, Al Arabiya TV reported.

Tuesday’s fighting broke out at a building used as Intelligence Headquarters by the former regime of Muammar Qaddafi.

Former rebels who remain organized in militia brigades are visible in many parts of the Libyan capital, and some have taken control of former government buildings, using them as headquarters.

Some witnesses near the scene told AFP that Forces from the new government’s Interior Ministry tried on Tuesday to retake the intelligence building, provoking a clash with the militia group that is currently occupying it.

While those reports could not be independently verified, the Interior Ministry declined to comment when contacted by AFP, saying only that it would comment on the clashes in the coming hours.

AFP sources said militiamen had blocked traffic from reaching the building, even as 2 ambulances tried to access the area of unrest, with witnesses reporting a number of injuries.

Many gunmen could also be seen circulating in the area and the situation remained chaotic, according to AFP reporters on the scene.


Source: AFP; Reuters; Al Arabiya



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