Who are Tripoli’s Most Important Militias?
Rada forces (special deterrence forces – قوة الردع الخاصة) are the main security force in Tripoli in the sense they are not perceived as a political militia subverting the state but the opposite, despite the salafist denomination of it’s leadership Abdurraouf Kara. They operate as an independent department under the MOI minister directly, and implement a focused anti-narcotics & OC mandate, do actual police work; patrols, investigations and arrests and are relatively well disciplined. They are probably the 3rd largest force in the city in terms of arms 4th in terms of size, after Haithem Tajouri’s forces (1st Company – MOI Central Security Department), Nawasi, (Rada) and Ghniwa’s Abu Saleem Military Council (now integrated into the local security directorate of the municipality. These are the main militias structured as ‘security’ forces inside the city. The reason Rada are smaller is 90% actual police officers (Lieutenant and above) 10% civilians, and around 70% of them pre-2011. Their jurisdiction is mainly limited to the east-southeast part of Tripoli where they have their branches and most of their forces; Tripoli centre, Soug Al Jouma, Ain Zara etc.