Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG)

From: "Chapter 8; Foreign Terrorist Organizations," Country Reports on Terrorism 2005, US Department of State, April 30, 2006.

The Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) emerged in the early 1990s among Libyans who had fought against Soviet forces in Afghanistan and against the Qadhafi regime in Libya. The LIFG declared the Government of Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi un-Islamic and pledged to overthrow it. Some members maintain a strictly anti-Qadhafi focus and organize against Libyan Government interests, but others are aligned with Usama bin Ladin and believed to be part of al-Qaida's leadership structure or active in the international terrorist network. The United States designated the LIFG a Foreign Terrorist Organization in December 2004.

Libyans associated with the LIFG are part of the broader international terrorist movement. The LIFG is one of the groups believed to have planned the Casablanca suicide bombings in May 2003. The LIFG claimed responsibility for a failed assassination attempt against Qadhafi in 1996 and engaged Libyan security forces in armed clashes during the 1990s. It continues to target Libyan interests and may engage in sporadic clashes with Libyan security forces. The LIFG constitutes a serious threat to U.S. interests and personnel.

Not known, but probably has several hundred active members or supporters.

Location/Area of Operation
Probably maintains a clandestine presence in Libya, but since the late 1990s many members have fled to various Asian, Persian Gulf, African, and European countries, particularly the United Kingdom.

External Aid
Not known. May obtain some funding through private donations, various Islamic nongovernmental organizations, and criminal acts.