Khalifa Belqasim Haftar

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Khalifa Belqasim Haftar
General Haftar.jpg
Allegiance  Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
(until 1987)
 Libya (2011-)
Service/branch Libya Libyan Ground Forces
Rank Lieutenant General
Battles/wars Chadian–Libyan conflict
(1978–1987)
Libyan civil war
* Battle of Ajdabiya
* Third Battle of Brega

Khalifa Belqasim Haftar (sometimes spelled Hifter, Hefter or Huftur) (Arabic: خليفة بالقاسم حفتر‎) is a senior military officer in Libya. In April 2011, he was reported as holding the rank of lieutenant general.

Formerly one of Muammar Gaddafi's army commanders in the Chadian–Libyan conflict, he fell out with the regime when Libya lost the war, and sought exile in the United States. Some sources have reported ties with the US Central Intelligence Agency.[1] After falling out with the Gaddafi regime, Haftar set up his own militia financed by the CIA, according to the 2001 book Manipulations africaines, published by Le Monde diplomatique. After entering the United States in the 1990s, Haftar took up residence in Vienna, Virginia, five miles outside of Langley, Virginia.[2] Haftar comes from the Farjani tribe.[3]

In 2011 he returned to Libya to support the Libyan civil war. In March, a military spokesperson announced that Haftar had been appointed commander of the military, though the National Transitional Council denied this.[4] By April, Abdul Fatah Younis held the role of commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces, Omar El-Hariri serving as Younis' Chief of Staff and Haftar took the third most senior position as the commander of ground forces with the rank of lieutenant general.[5][6]

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