Home | News    Wednesday 30 July 2014

8 Sudanese killed, 2 injured in Libya’s Tripoli clashes

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July 29, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese embassy in Tripoli said that eight Sudanese nationals were killed and two others injured in clashes between armed militias, which took place in the Libyan capital’s Al-Karimea neighbourhood.

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African travellers pass through security checks at Tripoli’s Mitiga airport on 22 July 2014 after clashes between rival militias closed down Tripoli International Airport (Photo: AFP/Mahmud Turkia)

Three years after the fall of the Gaddafi regime, uncontrolled former rebel factions continue to wage war against each other as anarchy sweeps across the North African country.

Earlier this week, the United Nations announced it was withdrawing all its staff from Libya. Foreign diplomatic missions have evacuated their staff and ordered their citizens to leave.

Al-Karimia neighbourhood, which is located near Tripoli airport, has recently witnessed heavy fighting that killed over hundred people prompting the civil aviation authority to announce closure of the Libyan airspace by August first.

The Sudanese embassy said large efforts are underway to facilitate return of the Sudanese nationals stranded at the airport.

Ashrooq TV reported ongoing contacts between the embassy and the Secretariat of Sudanese Working Abroad (SSWA) to evacuate those stranded at Mitiga airport.

The embassy also called upon its nationals to move away from areas of armed clashes for their own safety.

The head of the SSWA, Hag Magid Swar, stressed that at least 10 Sudanese nationals were killed and others severely injured when a rocket hit Al-Krimea residential area.

The SSWA emergency committee, in a meeting chaired by Swar, discussed the issue of evacuating Sudanese nationals who are stranded in some Libyan airports and land crossings.

Libya’s interim government warned of growing dangers to civilians from a large and spreading fire in a fuel depot near Tripoli’s international airport, which was sparked by fighting in the area between militias armed with heavy weapons.

In a statement on Monday, the government said that the fire could trigger a “humanitarian and environmental disaster” in Tripoli, appealing for “international help” to extinguish the blaze.

Libyan TV stations called on residents to evacuate areas near the airport. Social networking sites posted images of billowing black smoke over Tripoli skyline.

The battle for control of the airport began two weeks ago when Islamist-led militias who are mostly from the western city of Misrata launched a surprise assault on the airport, under control of rival militias from the western mountain town of Zintan.

(ST)

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