Grand Mufti of Libya Urges Libyans to Fight Against Haftar’s Forces Only in Benghazi

(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)

Grand Mufti Sheikh Sadiq al-Ghariani during an appearance on his Tanasah Television channel on Sunday

In a statement made on his Tanasah Television channel on Sunday, Libya’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Sadiq Al-Ghariani discredited recent allegations and criticism that he had called on Libyan soldiers last week to attack people in Benghazi.

Clarifying the remarks he made last week, in which he received a lot of criticism for, Ghariani said that he called for “attacking the oppressors, I urged the revolutionaries to head to Benghazi after Sirte not for attacking people, but to attack the aggressors, to fight Haftar and his soldiers only,” he stressed.

Last Sunday, during his weekly Television program, Ghariani called on Libyan revolutionaries to finish liberating Sirte from ISIS militants and then move on to Benghazi to attack General Khalifa Haftar’s forces.

“The real battle in Libya is the one against Haftar. Only when he is defeated will Libya find security and stability,” said Ghariani last Sunday.

In addition, Ghariani indicated that he supported Saturday’s attacks by the Defend Benghazi Brigades on Haftar’s forces in Adjabiya, which have been strongly condemned by the Presidential Council in a statement made on the Government of National Accord’s (GNA) Facebook page.

Ghariani who is a controversial figure in libya, having been accused by some of inciting violence, has been the top religious cleric in Libya since February 2012, after being appointed by the National Transitional Council, Libya’s post revolutionary government.

The Sheikh is greatly opposed to Haftar and his Dignity Operation war against anyone who he considers to be Islamists and his enemies in the eastern cities of Benghazi and Derna, and has repeatedly compared Haftar to be another oppressor like former dictator Muammar Gaddafi who was outed during the 2011 Libyan uprising.

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