In the first three months of 2020, Turkey has sent between 3,500 and 3,800 Syrian troops to Libya to fight the forces of Caliph Haftar.
Developments in #Libya July 17, 1999
- Wefaq government:
- Two Russian cargo planes landed at Al-Jafra base.
- Wagner blew up the bridge leading to Al-Jafra and the water supply line in the west of the city.
Image of Sakarya 122mm T-122 rocket launcher in Libya. This rocket launcher has a range of 20-40 km depending on the ammunition.
- US Command in Africa:
- Russian forces (Wagner) prevent fire in Libya.
- Russia has the power to stop Wagner’s activities in Libya, but it has no will to do so (since they are owned and operated by Putin.
- Sudanese military has arrested 162 people trying to enter Libya in northern Darfur.
- The Wefaq government claims that the National Army is abusing Sudanese mercenaries on the front lines against them. (The images above are related to this news.)
- Libyan National Oil Company:
- The losses of stopping the production and non-export of Libyan oil since January 2020 have amounted to 7 billion dollars.
- Colonel Al-Masmari, spokesman of the National Army:
- We are ready to face any attack by Turkey and its militants in Al-Jafra and Sirte.
- Different Russian military contractors in different countries by group and country Wagner, E.N.O.T. and COSSACKS are active in almost all Russian-backed conflict zones around the world.
New satellite images of Libya’s Al-Jafra base show the deployment of two new radars at the base. Su-24 fighters can also be seen in these images, one of which is painted by the Russian Air Force. The fighter jets were deployed in Libya with the support of the UAE to support Haftar.
Putin authorized and supported Russian Mercenary Groups
Back to Libya
Verified photographic evidence shows indiscriminately placed booby-traps and minefields around the outskirts of Tripoli down to Sirte since mid-June. These weapons are assessed to have been introduced into Libya by the Wagner Group.
Su-24 Fencer combat jets parked outside hardened aircraft shelters at the southern end of the base. This indicates these jets are still operating out of the base nearly a month after U.S. Africa Command released imagery showing one of them actually in flight there. This all comes amid an intensifying aerial component of the country’s civil war as foreign powers, chiefly Turkey and Russia, become even more directly entangled in the fighting.
Russian MiGs above – Su24 / Al-Jufrah below
US imposed sanctions on three individuals and five entities that are linked to Russia’s paramilitary Wagner Group, after accusing the mercenary group of laying landmines in and around Libya’s capital Tripoli. The economic penalties all affected individuals and businesses with close ties to Yevgeniy Prigozhin, a businessman with links to Russian President Vladimir Putin and who is believed to be the financier behind the private military firm. The Wagner Group has been instrumental in assisting Russia to achieve its military goals in Ukraine, Sudan, Syria and Libya.
The sanctions announcement came just hours after U.S. Africa Command accused the Wagner Group of “complicating Libyan cease-fire efforts” by placing mines and other explosive devices in and around Tripoli. It included photos of what appeared to be booby-traps and improvised mines that it said were placed by the Wagner Group.
Prigozhin is already under U.S. sanctions, but the new actions target previously nonsanctioned entities who aid him, the Treasury Department said in a statement. In addition, the agency accused two of the businesses and two individuals of suppressing and discrediting democratic demonstrators in Sudan. “Yevgeniy Prigozhin and his network are exploiting Sudan’s natural resources for personal gain and spreading malign influence around the globe,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
“The United States remains committed to holding him and other bad actors accountable so Sudan and other countries can operate freely,” he said.
Among those designated are M Invest, which the Treasury said is a front company for the Wagner Group’s operations in Sudan, owned by Prigozhin, as well as its Sudan subsidiary Meroe Gold and two individuals the U.S. said are key to their operations. Also sanctioned are Hong Kong and Thailand-based Shine Dragon Group Limited, Shen Yang Jing Cheng Machinery Imp and Exp Co., and Zhe Jiang Jiayi Small Commodities Trade Company Limited. The companies helped Prigozhin carry out U.S. dollar transactions exceeding $7.5 million, the department said.
The U.S. has previously accused Prigozhin of funding the Internet Research Agency, a mysterious “troll farm” in St. Petersburg accused of running online manipulation to then-presidential candidate Donald Trump in the 2016 election.
Wagner Group PMC Leadership
Russia’s Wagner Group is one of the most controversial groups among the mercenaries. It is owned by Yevgeny Prigozhin, a catering magnate who is also known as “Putin’s chef” due to his close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The firm is known for its mercenaries and political activities in Syria, Ukraine, Libya and other African countries.
Wagner is known for its support of Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and separatist groups in eastern Ukraine as well as the activities of its mercenaries in Syria, Ukraine and African countries.
According to UN reports, Wagner is working for Haftar with more than a two thousand mercenaries.
Mercenaries from the Wagner Group turned the military balance in favor of Haftar after intervening in the conflict in Libya. The group’s military presence had remained uncertain for a long time.
Video footage of thousands of mercenaries reportedly affiliated with Wagner was captured while they were withdrawing from the front lines in the capital to areas under Haftar’s control and revealed the security company’s activities in Libya.
Anadolu Agency teams monitored the places where the Wagner Group withdrew from and proved the presence of the group on the ground in Libya with many notes scribbled in Russian on the walls of civilian homes as well as Russian books left behind.