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Mechili is located in Libya
Location in Libya
Coordinates: 32°09′22″N 22°17′03″E / 32.15611°N 22.28417°E / 32.15611; 22.28417
Country  Libya
District Derna
Time zone UTC+2 (EET)

Mechili (Arabic: المخيلي‎) is a small village in Cyrenaica, Libya and the site of a former Turkish fort.[1] It is nearly 274 km (170 mi) east of Benghazi and 80 km (50 mi) west of Timimi.


Because of its location in the desert, Mechili suffered in the past from isolation. However, its isolation ended after paving the Charruba–Timimi desert road between the years 1975–1985, and this road became the preferred route for travel between Tobruk to Benghazi.

World War II

  • In January 1941, the British force named “Western Desert Force” under command of General Richard O’Connor (after taking Tobruk on 22 January) executed a daring outflanking movement and took Mechili from Italian forces on 27 January.
  • On 7 April the same year, the Italian armoured division Ariete captured the British garrison at Mechili[2] as a part of German Lieutenant General Erwin Rommel’s first offensive through Cyrenaica with the goal of encircling the British forces, and this helped in capturing O’Connor near Derna the same month.
  • On 18 December 1941, British forces re-took Mechili as a part of Operation Crusader.
  • In early February 1942, Rommel’s forces again took Mechili as a part of his second offensive through Cyrenaica.
  • In November 1942, the British forces occupied Mechili for the last time.


  1. ^ Rommel's North Africa Campaign: September 1940 – November 1942, Jack Greene, Alessandro Massignani, Da Capo Press, 1999
  2. ^ Wlaker, Ian (2012). Iron Hulls, Iron Hearts: Mussolini's Elite Armoured Divisions in North Africa. Crowood. p. 71. ISBN 1847974732.


  • Kenneth Macksey, "Beda Fomm : The Classic Victory",Ballantine Books, New York, 1971.
  • Peter Young(ed.), "The History of World War II", vols. no.4 & 8, Orbis Publication,1984.
  • Derek Jewell (ed.), “Alamein and the Desert War”, Times Newspapers, Sphere Books, 1967.

Coordinates: 32°10′N 22°17′E / 32.167°N 22.283°E / 32.167; 22.283

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