(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)
Leaked audio files indicate that the US is working with renegade General Khalifa Haftar, according to Libyan media who released the leaked documents on Tuesday.
The audio recording was of a US pilot communicating with the control tower of Banina airspace, in Benghazi, which is under the command of Haftar. There were also conversations between the Banina control tower and NATO airbases in the region.
The pilot in the recordings is said to have spoken in an “American accent” according to the local TV station who released the leaked audio recordings.
Various military aircrafts were mentioned in the recording with the US pilot, including US air Force CN-35.
The recordings, which were recorded sometime between June and August, suggest that the military aircrafts were used to assist Haftar in his fight against his opponents in eastern Libya.
About 14 flights mentioned in the recording flew between Banina and NATO airbases, including NATO bases in Sicily and Pantelleria in Italy and the Island of Crete in Greece.
It was only in July when a western power admitted to conducting operations in eastern Libya without the permission of the UN-backed Libyan government. The confession came after a brigade opposing Haftar shot down a helicopter carrying French troops.
After the Libyan uprising in 2011 a power vacuum formed in the country, allowing various militia groups to take advantage of the situation by attempting to gain power and control.
There are currently two main political powers in Libya, the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) based in Tripoli and the Tobruk-based House of Representatives, which is backed by Haftar. The HoR refused to give the GNA its support and without it the fledgling government will continue to face challenges in governing Libya.
The HoR will soon be voting on whether or not they support the new cabinet assembled by the GNA.