TRIPOLI 

The Libyan army said Wednesday it has spotted the dispatch of military supplies from Egypt to the city of Tobruk in northeastern Libya.

The new development came shortly after warlord Khalifa Haftar said his forces were preparing for a “major battle” near the cities of Sirte and al-Jufra.

Images published by the government-led Operation Volcano of Rage showed people in military uniform standing beside vehicles carrying weapons and military equipment.

The Libyan army, however, did not give further details.

On April 8, the Libyan army released photos of an Egyptian vessel arriving at the Tobruk harbor carrying 40 containers of ammunition for Haftar.

Also, last year on June 6, the Libyan army released photos of military supplies and ammunition arriving by land from Egypt to support Haftar’s militia.

In June, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi suggested that Cairo could launch “external military missions” into Libya “if required,” saying that “any direct intervention in Libya has already become legitimate internationally.”

Al-Sisi said the city of Sirte and al-Jufra airbase are a “red line,” calling on his army to “be prepared to carry out any mission here within our borders, or if necessary outside our borders.”

Since April 2019, Haftar’s illegitimate forces have launched attacks on the Libyan capital of Tripoli and other parts of northwestern Libya, resulting in more than 1,000 deaths, including civilian women and children.

However, the Libyan government has recently achieved significant victories, pushing Haftar’s forces out of Tripoli and the strategic city of Tarhuna.

* Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara

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