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Libyan National Army seizes GRIMALDI car carrier and sails it to Benghazi

File Photo: Grimaldi RO-RO

PortandTerminal.com, January 12, 2020

Naval forces of the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by Marshal Khalifa Haftar, opposed to Libyan UN-recognized government, seized Italian cargo ship, according to official LNA statement, released on Jan 12.

BENGAZI, LIBYA – A Grimaldi car carrier is believed to have been seized by Naval forces of the Libyan National Army (LNA) and taken to Bengazi, territory which they control. The information comes via an official LNA statement that was released on Jan. 12.

Marshal Khalifa Haftar, leader of Libya's LNA
The LNA is led by Marshal Khalifa Haftar

The ship was en route to Misurata Port which is controlled by the Libyan government. The statement didn’t reveal details or identify the ship, it was said only, that the ship was taken to LNA-controlled Benghazi. There are however a number of reports that the vessel seized is the GRANDE BALTIMORA (IMO: 9784037).

The vessel will be searched for arms and military equipment the LNA have said. If there are no arms/ammunition on board, the ship will be released, and all cargo bound for Misurata to be offloaded at Benghazi. The crew will also be interrogated, added the LNA spokesperson.

In 2011 Libya’s leader Muammar al-Gaddafi (centre) was toppled and brutally killed by rebels

Libya is in the midst of a political meltdown following the toppling and brutal killing of Muammar al-Gaddafi in 2011. There is no real national government but rather three centres of regional power with varying degrees of influence. It appears that the Grimaldi car carrier has been caught in the middle of a bitter power struggle between the LNA and the UN-recognized Libyan government.

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