[QODLink]
Middle East

Heavy fighting kills five in Libya's Benghazi

Nine wounded after heavy fighting between security forces and rival militias erupted overnight.

Last updated: 14 Jul 2014 11:55
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Tensions between security forces and independent former rebel groups have often turned violent [Reuters]

At least five people have been killed and nine wounded in the Libyan city of Benghazi after heavy fighting between security forces and rival militias.

The clashes erupted late on Sunday, when irregular forces loyal to renegade former general Khalifa Haftar bombarded militia bases as part of his campaign to oust armed groups, he describes as terrorists, from Benghazi, hospital and security sources said.

Special forces also clashed with militia fighters in the city, the Reuters news agency reported.

Three years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi, Libya has slipped deep into chaos with its weak government and new army unable to control brigades of former rebel fighters and militias who often battle over political and economic power.

The violence comes shortly after heavy fighting between rival militias vying for control of Libya's main airport in Tripoli, which left at least seven people dead and halted all flights.

The clashes were the worst in the city since 40 people were killed in clashes between militias and armed residents in November.

A further 36 people were wounded in Sunday's clashes, which led to the UN temporarily relocate some of its international staff out of Libya.

The battle is believed to have started when militias made up of fighters from the city of Misrata tried to oust a rival faction from Zintan, which controlled the airport.

219

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
President Poroshenko arrives in Washington on Thursday with money and military aid on his mind, analysts say.
Early players in private medicine often focused on volume over quality, turning many Chinese off for-profit care.
Al Jazeera asked people across Scotland what they think about the prospect of splitting from the United Kingdom.
With social media dominating communication among young Americans, taunting is no longer confined to school hours.
Referendum on Scottish independence is the first major election in the UK where 16 and 17-year olds get a vote.
join our mailing list