ISIS IN ACTION
On 21 February, at 9:15 in the morning, an ISIS Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Device (VBIED) drove into the Libyan National Army’s (LNA) 127 infantry battalion at a checkpoint near Waddan in the Jufra district. The attack destroyed two vehicles and killing three LNA fighters, wounding two more. ISIS’s official news agency Amaq claimed responsibility for the attack and stated that they had killed 15 “apostate militia of Haftar”. ISIS’s Cyrenaican Libyan Branch, Wiliaya Barqa, also claimed responsibility for the attack and released the name of the suicide bomber – Abu Muhammad al-Muhajir.
On 26 February, the US imposed sanctions on several Libyan, Maltese and Egyptian firms, traders and ships reportedly participating in oil smuggling out of Libya. The US Treasury has alleged that a Malta-based network has gained more than US$36 million through illicit oil smuggling out of Zuwara to Europe in 2016. The sanctions have targeted 6 individuals (four Maltese, one Libyan and one Egyptian), 21 Libyan and Maltese companies, and 7 Maltese vessels.
On 23 February, representatives from the US Secretary of State and the Government of National Accord (GNA) Ministry of Foreign Affairs signed a cultural property protection Memorandum of Understanding to impose restrictions on the import of Libyan cultural property to the US. The new sanctions and MoU maintain the US’s focus on counter-terrorism priorities in Libya.
This article was republished with explicit permission from the author.