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Egypt denies allegations of involvement in Libyan air strike

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi denied on Sunday allegations that Egypt was involved in an air strike targeting militant hubs in Libya, state-owned Al-Ahram reports.

Following allegations by a Libyan militant group accusing Egypt of being involved along with the UAE in an air strike that targeted militant locations on Saturday, Sisi said that the Egyptian military’s planes have not executed any military operations in Libya.

During a meeting with media personalities held on Sunday, he added that Egypt is very concerned about the situation in Libya and considers it a matter of national security. He also said that the allegations are entirely false and aim to cause instability.

The militant group calling itself “Operation Libya Dawn” had issued a statement on Saturday accusing Egypt and the UAE of taking part in an air strike earlier on Saturday in Tripoli that killed 10 militants and injured others. The group also announced that it took control of Tripoli’s airport on Saturday.

The Egyptian Foreign Affairs Ministry also issued a statement denying the allegations on Sunday, urging the quick formation of a national government in Libya and the restructuring of its institutions to protect its unity and land.

Intense clashes have been unfolding in Libya between militant groups and forces loyal to the renegade former military general, Khalifa Haftar, for months. Rumors of potential Egyptian military intervention started following the targeting of 15 Egyptians in Libya who were killed as they were trying to cross into Tunisia early August.

Militant attacks that have recently increased in Egypt’s Western desert have also been linked to the Libyan unrest.

However, the Foreign Affairs Ministry had asserted in a press conference held earlier this month in Tunisia while overseeing the evacuation of Egyptians fleeing Libya that Egypt’s military would not intervene in Libya and is only tasked with protecting its own borders.