Libya’s fragile ceasefire is at risk of falling apart after Commander of the Joint Operations Room Major General Osama Juwaili said on Wednesday he would resort to force if necessary.
Juwaili, who has been perceived to be sympathetic to the rival PM, Fathi Bashagha, has been sacked by PM Abdul Hamid Dbeibah of the UN-backed Government of National Unity (GNU) after the former attempted to install himself in Tripoli last May.
Talking to the Libya Al-Ahrar Channel, the Commander of the Zintan brigade during the country's uprise in 2011 said armed groups are trying to prevent Bashagha's cabinet from carrying out its work from the capital, Tripoli, hinting that he would use force if other players chose to do so.
"Preventing the parliament-appointed government from entering Tripoli and taking over its duties undermines the principle of peaceful transfer of power," Juwaili says.
He underscored that Bashagha's government must be empowered to carry out its work while insisting that it is not about defending individuals but about the principle of a peaceful transfer of power.
Last May, Fathi Bashagha, who was appointed prime minister earlier this year by the east-based House of Representatives, launched a failed attempt to take over the office in Tripoli, which prompted changes in the GNU security leadership, including Director of Military Intelligence Osama Juwaili.