Mahdi Al-Harati in September 2011, after the Battle of Tripoli
|Born||c. 1973 (age 39–40)
|Allegiance|| National Transitional Council (2011)
Syrian National Council (2012)
|Service/branch||National Liberation Army|
|Commands held||Tripoli Brigade
|Conflicts||Libyan civil war
Syrian civil war
Mahdi al-Harati (born c. 1973) is a former co-commander of the Tripoli Brigade during the Libyan civil war. He was also the commander of Liwaa Al-Umma, a militant group fighting against the Syrian government in the Syrian civil war.
He was described by Volkskrant, a Dutch daily newspaper, as being a face of the Battle of Tripoli and one of the most important rebel commanders of the Libyan civil war. The Sunday Times, a British newspaper, offered a first-hand account of Al-Mahdi's advance on Tripoli and his men's assault on Gaddafi's former residence, Bab Al-Azizia. He was appointed second in command of the newly formed Tripoli Military Council.
On 11 October 2011, Al-Harati resigned as deputy head of the Tripoli Military Council, amid tensions over security in the capital. According to the Irish Times, while Al-Harati's associates in Tripoli assure that the resignation was for "personal reasons", a senior NTC official quoted by CNN said that the resignation was because "differences with the National Transitional Council on the planning of the security of Tripoli". Fathi Al-Wersali, member of the Tripoli Military Council, stated that Al-Harati would continue as commander of the Tripoli brigade.
Following his involvement in the Libyan civil war al-Harati went on a fact-finding mission to Syria where, following discussions with members of the Syrian opposition, he decided to form the militant group Liwaa Al-Umma. After 6 months of leading Liwaa Al-Umma, Al-Harati left the brigade in September of 2012 and handed over its command to the Free Syrian Army.
In 2011, the Irish Sunday World reported that Mahdi al-Harati was being paid by the CIA and that €200,000 in €500 notes was found in his home in Dublin.
- "Irish Libyans join rebels trying to oust Gadafy". Irish Times. 13 August 2011. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- "Irish Libyan Mahdi al-Harati leads the overthrow of Colonel Gadafy". Irish Central. 29 August 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
- Wie zijn de Tripoli Brigade precies? - De opstand in Libië - VK
- Post (6 January 2011). "The Sunday Times". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 19 September 2011.
- Fitzgerald, Mary (11 October 2011). "Libyan-Irish commander resigns as deputy head of Tripoli military council". Irish Times. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
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