Plane belonging to Libyan warlord Haftar ‘lands in Israel’: report
A plane belonging to Libyan warlord Khalifa Haftar landed in Israel on Thursday, a military correspondent for Israel’s state-owned Kan news service has said.
Writing on Twitter, Itay Blumental said that an “executive plane used by Libyan general Khalifa Haftar” landed in Israel after making a “diplomatic stop in Cyprus”.
“After two hours on the ground the plane took off back to Cyprus,” the correspondent added.
Prior to the signing of a peace agreement in October 2020, Haftar’s forces controlled much of eastern and southern Libya and fought against the internationally recognized Libyan government based in Tripoli.
He received support from several countries including Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, which signed a normalisation agreement with Israel in 2020.
Haftar still challenges the authority of current Libyan Prime Minister Abdel Hamid Dbeibah and was due to run in now-postponed Libyan presidential elections.
Earlier this week Dbeibah denied reports in Saudi and Libyan media that he met with Mossad officials in Jordan to discuss normalisation of relations between Libya and Israel.
Rumours of continued courtship between Israel and rival Libyan political leaders persist however.
In November 2021, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Khalifa Haftar’s son Saddam secretly visited Israel to win support in the now-postponed presidential elections.
Haftar’s son and former dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam were both linked to an unnamed Israeli PR firm working on their presidential campaigns, according to Israeli media reports.