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UN-sanctioned militia leader says war is the only way to control Libya

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

MISURATA – Commander of the Al Somood militia, Salah Badi, compared himself to the Founding Father of the United States, George Washington, and stated that war is the only way to control Libya.

Badi spoke with Italian newspaper L’Espresso in his first interview with a foreign media following the United Nations’ decision to sanction him. This decision came after Badi’s militia took part in a month-long deadly clashes in Tripoli last year, which left more than a hundred people dead and thousands injured, missing and displaced.

In the interview, Badi lashed out against almost all key political figures in Libya. He called U.N. Special Envoy, Ghassan Salamé, “a liar” for stating the fact that more than a hundred people were killed during the clashes; and demanded to see the death certificates of those killed. He claimed that the clashes were “supported by people”.

He attacked Head of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord, Fayez Al-Sarraj, as “a guard dog of the UN” and said that he “works only as the Mayor of Tripoli” because “he has no power on the ground, outside Tripoli, or in other areas of the country”

Badi criticized General Commander of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, saying that he “has his own agenda” and accused him of coordinating with Tripoli’s militias in order to seize control of the capital.

He did not give a subtle criticism for the Muslim Brotherhood, however, he said that he is “against anyone who uses Islam as a political slogan.”

Badi also denounced militias that “occupied the institutions and commit daily crimes” and stated that “neither the U.N. nor al-Sarraj have the power to dismantle them, only the war can do it.”

L’Espresso interviewer then pointed out to Badi’s hypocrisy and cognitive dissonance. The interviewer asked how can he criticize militias while being a militia leader himself, to which Badi responded by comparing himself to George Washington.

“The only fighters for freedom are the militia, like me,” he concluded.

UN Sanctions Committee lists Salah Badi in the sanctions list

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