In a press conference from Tripoli, Interior Minister of the Government of National Accord (GNA) Fathi Bashagha outlined his Ministry’s efforts to provide security to the Libyan people.
During the conference, the Interior Minister denounced the Libyan National Army (LNA) for supposedly releasing prisoners from Surman and Sobratha before GNA forces could capture the city, contradicting evidence that forces affiliated with the GNA carried out the prison break.
On Monday, April 13, GNA forces captured the Western Coastal towns of Surman and Sobrata from the LNA. On that day, a prison break took place resulting in the release of over 500 criminals consisting of islamists, fuel and human smugglers.
Videos circulated around social media showing forces affiliated with the GNA inside the prison grounds greeting and celebrating the newly released prisoners.
In such videos, GNA-coalition commanders of their own respective armed groups such as Mahmoud bin Rajab, Al-Bija and Dabashi were seen within the prison grounds, contradicting the GNA Interior Minister Bahsgha’s statement that the prisoners were released by the LNA prior their departure.
The Minister went on to warn all who had escaped the prison to hand themselves over willingly otherwise face arrest, adding ‘we will do everything within our power to capture all of the escaped prisoners”.