Libya: Haftar’s return home planned for Thursday

Khalifa Haftar, the head of the self-imposed Libyan National Army (LNA) is planned to return home this Thursday, the LNA spokesperson told Reuters.

The army commander who has been out of the country for medical treatment in Paris would land in the eastern town of Benghazi Thursday. He would be coming from Egypt where he held talks with Egyptian officials, Ahmed Mesmari told the agency.

Haftar, according to another LNA source and an Egyptian diplomatic source, told the media that the 75-year old warlord arrived Wednesday in Cairo from Paris.

Haftar, on April 11 was transferred to Paris from Jordan for medical treatment after suffering a stroke. The Eastern region strongman was later rumored to suffer from lung cancer that affected his brain and his speaking abilities.

Media reports announced his death but authorities in the east and the UN Special Mission for Libya (UNSMIL) debunked the rumors.

Haftar’s brother Oman Haftar Wednesday told an Egyptian media that his brother was in good shape and was planning quick return to Libya.
Preparations have been underway to welcome the army commander, reports say. A televised speech to the nation is scheduled, Libya Herald reports.

Streets of the city and the town of Rajma, Haftar’s stronghold, have been cleaned up and decorated.

Egypt is one of Haftar’s foreign backers. Cairo and Abu Dhabi have reportedly held secret talks to choose a successor to the army commander.

The former Muammar Gaddafi’s close military aide totally captured Benghazi last July after three years of fierce fighting with Islamists.

Written by