Karim Mezran

  • Latest Libyan Shock Should Come as No Surprise

    A few years ago, I was asked by an international journalist to comment on rumors about the presence of French troops in eastern Libya. Purportedly, France was actively supporting former Qaddafi army general Khalifa Haftar in his attempt to expand his control over the entire region of Cyrenaica. This was done under the pretext of combating Islamic radical terrorists and other opponents of the general, who had been appointed as Marshal by the rubber stamp Libyan parliament in Tobruk.


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  • Karim Mezran in The Hill: A way forward in Libya


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  • What are the Implications of Haftar’s Offensive?

    The brutal attack unleashed by General Khalifa Haftar’s militia, the Libyan National Army, against the city of Tripoli is indeed a game-changer. After the attack on April 4th everything changed in Libya, and not only in the political realm. The support that Haftar enjoyed within parts of the population of Tripoli, who preferred a strong-man rule over the incompetence and perceived corruption of the UN-sponsored Government of National Accord, melted away within hours of the attack. Many young inhabitants of the city flocked to the headquarters of the various militias to enroll in the fight against the advancing troops of the General.


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  • The Growing Russian Challenge and What Should Be Done About It

    All around the world, Russia is increasingly asserting itself, propping up dictators, and, in some instances, posing a direct challenge to US interests. Russian President Vladimir Putin held his first-ever meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Vladivostok on April 25. Kim’s visit to Russia, an old ally, came as diplomacy with US President Donald J. Trump has faltered.

    Trump and Putin spoke on the phone for over an hour on May 3. Venezuela and North Korea were among the topics the two leaders discussed.


    We take a look at some areas of confrontation, what is driving Russian interests, and how the United States is responding to this challenge.


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  • Mezran Joins NPR to Discuss US Policy in Libya


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  • Mezran Qouted in VOA on Haftar's Assault on Tripoli


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  • Trump Wades into Libyan Crisis, And Why That’s Not Good News

    US President Donald J. Trump’s apparent support for Khalifa Haftar, the leader of the self-styled Libyan National Army, has muddied the waters in a dangerous part of the world. But does it signal a shift in the US position?


    Karim Mezran, a senior fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, said: “The United States, so far, along with Italy and Britain, has had a very straightforward position: there is no military solution possible in Libya, only a UN-backed negotiations process.”


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  • Mezran Quoted in The Times on the Dangers to Europe from General Haftar's Offensive


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  • Mezran Quoted in World News Monitor on the Current Situation in Libya


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  • Libya: Back on The Brink of a Civil War?

    Libya, once again, is on the boil.


    Khalifa Haftar, who leads the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) in the eastern part of the country, set off alarm bells this week when he ordered his troops to march on Tripoli where an internationally recognized government is seated. Haftar refuses to accept the legitimacy of this government, which is led by Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj. And therein lies the problem.

    Haftar’s forces control large swathes of territory in the eastern and southern parts of Libya and have steadily gained ground.

    In response to Haftar’s orders to the LNA, militias in the western cities of Libya have rallied to defend Tripoli.


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