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Egypt's Sisi receives Haftar for a second time in a month

Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi met Thursday with Libya’s Khalifa Haftar, saluting the eastern-based strongman’s efforts to combat terrorism and extremist militias in his country.

The meeting, which is the second in around a month between the two, comes as Haftar’s self-styled Libyan National Army presses an offensive to take the Libyan capital, Tripoli, in a fight against the internationally-recognized government headed by Prime Minister Fayez Al-Sarraj.

Egypt’s presidency said in a statement that al-Sisi reaffirmed his government’s support for efforts to “combat terrorism and extremists in order to achieve security and stability in Libya.” He also voiced his support for “the military establishment’s role in restoring” the foundations of legitimacy in the North African nation.

Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have backed Haftar, who has already secured much of the rest of the country, even as they have voiced support for the United Nations-backed peace process that was derailed by Haftar’s offensive. Sarraj, meanwhile, has been lobbying European officials in a bid to secure a firmer stance by them against Haftar.