US pulls forces from Libya as fighting approaches capital

Guterres centre leaves the airport in Benghazi Libya on April 5

U.S. forces in Libya have been evacuated for their safety in connection with the deteriorating security situation in the country, which now has U.S. Africa Command conducting "prudent military planning" as it assesses the situation, the military said Sunday.

"The security realities on the ground in Libya are growing increasingly complex and unpredictable", said Africom commander General Thomas Waldhauser.

Waldhauser did not discuss where the USA forces, who reportedly were taken out of Tripoli on fast amphibious boats, have been relocated to or when they intend to return.

The United States has temporarily withdrawn some of its forces from Libya due to "security conditions on the ground", a top military official said Sunday as a Libyan commander's forces advanced toward the capital of Tripoli and clashed with rival militias.

The offensive intensifies a power struggle that has fractured the oil and gas producer since the 2011 overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

The evacuation came as Field Marshal Haftar's offensive entered its fourth day, with units of his Libyan National Army fighting Tripoli militias in the city's southern suburbs.

The Tripoli airport has not been functional since fighting in 2014 destroyed much of the facility.

At least 21 people had been killed and 27 wounded, a spokesman for the Tripoli government said.

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In order to ensure, inter alia, that the family consider continuing with public Statements on the case back. But the image was widely viewed as an attempt to intimidate the family by powerful Saudi authorities.

In another sign of the situation worsening on the ground, a contingent of U.S. forces evacuated the country for security reasons. UN's chief Antonio Guterres, who visited both Tripoli and Tobruk this week, called on both sides to "avoid bloody confrontation".

The LNA reached the southern outskirts of the capital on Friday and says it took the former worldwide airport, though the Tripoli military officials deny this.

Haftar has since been accused of violating political agreements concluded under the United Nations by Fayez Sarraj, the Prime Minister of the Tripoli-based UN-backed government of national accord (GNA).

He said no causalities were reported from the airstrikes, and that General Hifter's forces declared Tripoli a no-fly zone for warplanes.

Still, American forces and diplomatic staff have continued to work in Libya with a special focus on helping the UN-backed government maintain its rickety grip on portions of the country.

"We were stabbed in the back", he said Saturday in televised comments, adding that his forces would confront Hifter's troops with "force and determination".

On April 4, Haftar announced the launch of an offensive on Tripoli.

Most of the pro-Haftar fighters who briefly captured the checkpoint late on Thursday were militiamen from the rival town of Sabratha further west along the Mediterranean coast.

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