14 Dead in Libya’s Benghazi Clashes

14 Dead in Libya’s Benghazi Clashes

Heavy clashes in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi have left at least 14 people dead and 32 wounded, medical officials said on Saturday.
Five years on from toppling Muammar Gaddafi, the late autocrat, Libya is plagued by instability, and militants have taken advantage of a security vacuum to expand their presence.
A spokesman for the military forces loyal to Libya’s eastern government, Wanis Boukhamada, said fighting was mostly in the neighborhood of Boatni. The army has been battling militant groups in the city for months, Reuters reported.
Two governments, one based in Tripoli and the other in the east, each backed by complex alliances of armed factions, are vying for control of the country.
On Friday, US warplanes carried out an airstrike on a suspected militant camp in Sabratha in western Libya. At least 50 people were killed, including two Serbian embassy staff abducted in Libya in November.
Neighboring Tunisia’s Interior Ministry said on Saturday that five militants had been arrested in the southern city of Ben Guerdan who had trained in Sabratha and had planned to carry out attacks in Tunisia.
US officials said on Friday that one of those targeted in the attack was the Tunisian Noureddine Chouchane, blamed for two attacks targeting foreign tourists in Tunisia last year in which dozens were killed.
More than 3,000 Tunisians have left their country to fight with militant groups in Syria and Iraq, but increasingly Tunisian officials say they see fighters returning to fight with IS in Libya.

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