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'Macron is responsible' for Tripoli battle casualties

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French President Emmanuel Macron "is responsible" for the casualties in Libya, a fighter loyal to the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) told Euronews, condemning the French leader's meeting with rebel general Khalifa Haftar. reports citing Euro News.

Macron received Haftar for a closed-door meeting in Paris on Wednesday as forces loyal to the strongman's Libyan National Army (LNA) continue to wage an offensive to take the North African country's capital, Tripoli, from the GNA. It came two weeks after the French president hosted the GNA's Prime Minister, Fayez al-Serraj.

For some fighters on the ground, the latest diplomatic overture shows that "Macron is responsible" for "anyone who dies here".

"France, but I don’t mean the French people, I mean Macron, is the one who supported Haftar," Mohamed Khalil Issa, commander of the Yatrib brigade, fighting for the GNA, told Euronews' Anelise Borges at a field hospital near the Ztarna frontline on the outskirts of Tripoli.

France, like the rest of the EU, has officially backed the GNA. However, according to experts, it has also given support to Haftar, whose forces control large swathes of the country, especially in the oil-rich eastern provinces, in an attempt to weaken Islamist militants — although France has never officially admitted to it.

"These three Arabian countries — Egypt, Saudi Arabia and [the United Arab] Emirates — support Haftar but Macron is the biggest devil of them all. Macron supported Haftar both politically and militarily," Issa added.

2019.05.23 / 15:36
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