BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:25 A.M.) – The Turkish-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) forces have strengthened their presence west of Sirte, despite threats from Egypt about any offensive to capture this strategic city in north-central Libya.

Reuters quoted sources on Sunday as saying that the GNA moved a convoy of some 200 military vehicles from Misrata on the Mediterranean coast towards Tawergha, which is along the path to Sirte.

The GNA and its supporters plan to take control of the city of Sirte, which is the gateway to the main oil ports of the country.

In addition, the leaders of France, Germany and Italy threatened, for the first time, to impose sanctions on countries that continue to violate the United Nations arms embargo on Libya.

In this context, Abdel Sattar Hitta, an expert on Libyan affairs, ruled out the move of the GNA forces toward Sirte as a prelude to a battle, pointing out that the issue will only be to harass the Libyan National Army.

Hitta added that Turkey may resort to the option of harassment and skirmishes as an alternative to a major battle, using the same method they use in Syria against the Kurdish forces in the north.

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