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Haftar’s LNA Denies Responsibility for Deadly Bombing of Military Academy – Spokesman

© AP Photo / Esam Omran Al-FetoriMembers of Libyan National Army (LNA) commanded by Khalifa Haftar, get ready before heading out of Benghazi to reinforce the troops advancing to Tripoli, in Benghazi, Libya April 13, 2019
Members of Libyan National Army (LNA) commanded by Khalifa Haftar, get ready before heading out of Benghazi to reinforce the troops advancing to Tripoli, in Benghazi, Libya April 13, 2019 - Sputnik International
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CAIRO (Sputnik) - The Libyan National Army (LNA) under the control of Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, denies involvement in an attack on a military academy in Tripoli that killed at least 30 people, LNA spokesman Ahmed Mismari said on Sunday.

According to the Ministry of Health of the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), at least 30 cadets were killed and another 33 were injured after a military academy in a GNA-controlled area of Tripoli was shelled. The GNA accused Haftar’s forces of conducting an air strike.

“The facts indicate that there was a terrorist attack conducted against military cadets … Perhaps it was a mine, not an air strike,” Mismari said, as quoted by the MENA agency.

On 4 April, Haftar’s troops began an assault to take control of the Libyan capital, Tripoli, from the GNA. In December, Haftar called for a final decisive step to break the GNA’s resolve, although no progress has been reported so far and troops loyal to the LNA and GNA are locked in a stalemate. Each side continues to maintain its position, while exchanging mortar fire and air strikes. The GNA has formally requested military assistance from Turkey.

Libya has been torn apart between the two rival administrations since 2011, when its long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown and killed, with the LNA controlling the east and the Tripoli-based GNA controlling the country’s west.

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