General Khalifa Haftar attends a news conference in Abyar, a small town to the east of Benghazi
General Khalifa HaftarReuters

Libyan rogue general Khalifa Haftar has survived an assassination attempt outside the eastern city of Benghazi, according to army sources.

Two of Haftar's guards were killed as a suicide bomber drove a Land Cruiser packed with explosives to the base of the retired general. Haftar who has launched a campaign against Islamist militants was said to have been unscathed.

He has been accused by Libya's central government of mounting a coup but the general said the regime has no mandate and has vowed to continue his campaign.

In May, Forces loyal to Haftar launched an assault on Islamist militias in Benghazi, leading to the deaths of at least 70 people. Militias allied to the general recently stormed Libya's parliament, highlighting the central government's weakening grip on security in the oil-rich African country.

Since the capture and killing of former president Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, Libyan authorities have struggled to control the groups that ousted him.