The Libyan National Army (LNA) is retreating from several fronts in western and central Libya, as forces loyal to the Government of National Accord (GNA) are pushing forward with a direct support from Turkey.
On June 5, the LNA withdrew from the town of Tarhunah southeast of the capital, Tripoli. Army units left behind loads of weapons, including several battle tanks, howitzers, armored vehicles as well as dozens of Grad rockets and mortar shells. GNA forces also captured a destroyed Pantsir-S1 system.
GNA forces didn’t stop in Tarhunah. On June 6, a large ground offensive was launched on the coastal town of Sirte, a key oil-export port.
The LNA is claiming that the attack was repelled. However, footage from the scene indicate that the army is retreating from Sirte. Several pick-ups and armored vehicles were reportedly seized or destroyed by government forces.
— KRS – URACOM (@alkaraisili) June 6, 2020
The GNA’s recent gains in western Libya were a direct result of Turkish support. Turkish combat drones are providing GNA forces with air support, while more than 11,000 Syrian militants are taking part in ground battles.
Meanwhile, the LNA’s backers, Egypt and the UAE, are yet to boost their support to match that provided by Turkey’s to the GNA.