TRIPOLI, Libya

A Russian cargo plane carrying Syrian fighters landed in Libya’s Sirte province, controlled by warlord Khalifa Haftar, the Libyan army said on Saturday.

The aircraft arrived at 11.00 a.m. local time (0900GMT) at the Ghardabiya Airbase, according to officials from the Sirte and Jufra operation department of the Libyan army.

On Aug. 21, the Libyan government announced a truce and ordered its military to stop operations against Haftar’s militias.

However, the Libyan army has since reported several breaches of the cease-fire by the militias.

Libya has been torn by civil war since the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

The GNA was founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement, but efforts for a long-term political settlement have failed due to a military offensive by forces loyal to Haftar.

The UN recognizes Fayez al-Sarraj’s government as the country’s legitimate authority as Tripoli has battled Haftar’s militias since April 2019 in a conflict that has claimed thousands of lives.

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