Libyan forces renew their push to oust ISIS from its former North African stronghold of Sirte, saying they had seized the city’s main mosque and a jail run by the militants’ morality police. The forces, mainly brigades from the city of Misrata, say that they are close to capture Sirte after taking most of the city in a three-month campaign, and have restricted militants to a residential area in the city. They have been supported by U.S. air strikes. At least nine brigade fighters are killed.
Gaddafi is sentenced to death by a court in Tripoli, with eight other figures from former dictatorship in a mass trial of former regime figures widely criticised by human rights groups and observers. Saif’s ICC-appointed lawyer, Jones, condemns the trial process:
It’s a complete show trial, a farce. This trial is effectively being run by Libya Dawn militias.
Saif is being held in Zintan since he was caught trying to flee Libya in the aftermath.
A suicide bomber drives a vehicle filled with explosives into a unit of Libyan soldiers in central Benghazi. Three are killed and 11 are wounded, some critically. The bomber targeted a unit of soldiers engaged in a street battle near the city’s port and naval base. This is an area where pro-government forces and bands of militarized Islamists frequently clash. Military source:
Suicide bombings have become frequent in the eastern port city, where forces loyal to the country’s internationally recognized government have been clashing with Islamist fighters, part of chaos gripping the oil producer.
A 29-minute video showing the killing of two groups Ethiopian Christians captives by Islamic State-affiliated militants in Libya is released. A masked fighter wielding a pistol says Christians must convert to Islam or pay a special tax prescribed by the Quran, before the captives in the south are shown being shot dead and the captives in the east are beheaded on a beach.
Islamic State affiliate militants behead eight Libyan guards and kidnap nine foreigners in an attack on al-Ghani oil field. Libya’s military spokesman, Ahmed al-Mesmari on Islamic State militants’ goal to take over Libya’s petroleum industry:
This is the lifeline of the Libyan people. The consequences of such a loss would be dire.
Miliband writes in The Independent that a multilateral approach is needed to tackle ISIS, including convening an international summit under the auspices of the United Nations, with the UK taking a leading role in engaging international partners on the issue, including more stable regimes such as Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iran, which he says are under threat from ISIS’s plans to expand its self-declared caliphate:
This multilateral strategy should have a number of objectives: to tackle the root causes of support for ISIS from within Iraq; to starve them of backing from outside; to bring regional powers together for a lasting political settlement and greater stability; and to provide humanitarian help to those facing the horrific consequences of this conflict.
He says that Britain faces risks at home including the threat of returning radicalized militants and should reform a Home Office program aimed at dealing with such threats, including potentially strengthening policy on control orders – now known as Terrorism Protection and Investigation Measures, or TPIMs – that allow the government to act against suspects who cannot be charged or deported. While there is some role for the U.S. military, neither it or the UK should put boots on the ground – and the UK should avoid unilateralism at all costs:
The events of this summer have underlined how turning our back on the complexities and instability of the Middle East is not an option. But we must also show Britain has learnt the lessons of our recent history with an approach based on a genuine multilateralism, working with others to build alliances across continents against Isis and their ideology.
HMS Enterprise sails into Tripoli and her survey boat, Spitfire, collects people from the Port of Tripoli. Armed personnel provide protection to the ship in the event of any attack. Britain is one of the last countries to wind down its diplomatic mission in Libya following a severe deterioration in the security situation as rebel groups continue fighting each other. Ministry of Defence:
As the Foreign Office has made clear, the UK Government will provide assisted departure for a number of UK nationals before suspending consular operations on Monday.
Personnel evacuate U.S. Embassy in Libya because of violence in the capital, Tripoli. Almost 150 personnel leave the Embassy and drive across the border into Tunisia, U.S. officials confirm. The Embassy will continue to operate from an other location. The decision to evacuate was made recently as the situation around the Embassy worsened. The United Nations and other international organizations and businesses temporarily evacuated staff from Libya earlier this month. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf:
We are committed to supporting the Libyan people during this challenging time, and are currently exploring options for a permanent return to Tripoli as soon as the security situation on the ground improves. In the interim, staff will operate from Washington and other posts in the region.
Libya’s government announces that it is considering calling for international forces to help restore order in the country. Dozens of rockets hit the Tripoli International Airport late on Monday, damaging 90 per cent of the planes stationed at the airport and the control tower. The Libyan government spokesman states:
“The government has studied the possibility to bring international forces to enhance security.”