Senior leaders of Khalifa Haftar’s militias, who are besieging Derna residents inside the city, warned of approaching Pearl Hotel and other civilian and service facilities in the city.
“The Derna Shura Council is using the hotel as a military operations room and an arms depot, therefore; we will bomb it” said Ali Abusitta, one of Haftar’s militia leaders.
The news agency that is affiliated with Al-Thanni government reported Abusitta as saying that Derna locals must stay away from the courts compound that overlooks the coastal road in the city.
On the other hand, the administration of the Pearl Hotel denounced the threats made by Haftar’s militias, refuting, in a statement Wednesday, the existence of any kind of weapons or ammunition or even armed men inside the hotel.
Pearl Hotel is one of the entertainment destination favored by Derna residents as it hosts lots of artistic and cultural activities as well as theater performances in addition to sports competitions such as table tennis, chess and the like.
Recently, Haftar’s militias focused their airstrikes on civilian and entertainment targets under the pretext of being used by Derna Shura Council. Those targets included Derna port, the public stadium, the games hall, and the last of which was an airstrike targeting a children’s amusement park on Derna corniche at the peak time when it was crowded with visitors.