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Tripoli militia battles continue

Unidentified aircraft flew over Tripoli before dawn Monday (August 18th), and loud explosions could be heard, AFP reported.

The development came as clashes continued between rival militias in the capital seeking to control the airport, ignoring a ceasefire demand from Libya’s House of Representatives.

The latest round of infighting erupted Friday and left a large number of dead and wounded, as well as displaced residents.

“What hurts me most are the young ones lured by the crazy Salah Badi from Misrata who involved them in the war; this battle cannot be settled,” commented Noman Benotman, a terror group researcher and president of the Quilliam Institute.

Benotman added that the death toll from Saturday’s battle in the capital was reportedly 18 from the city of Misrata. “That city supported and is responsible for the destruction and killing of Tripoli and its people and the displacement of Tawergha residents,” he said.

Meanwhile, the speaker of Libya’s newly elected legislature, Aguila Salah Issa, said, “The House of Representatives formed a parliamentary committee to contact all the warring parties in Libya in order to reach an immediate cease-fire without conditions.”

“This committee stands at the same distance from everyone and will urge all sides in the conflict to adhere to the application of the decision of the House of Representatives of an immediate and unconditional ceasefire and an end to violence and all attacks on civilians and civilian neighbourhoods,” the speaker added.

Tariq Alhabuni, a seller from Tripoli, said that the situation in the capital was “catastrophic in terms of fuel shortages and a lack of food and shelters” .

“Those who do not die with rockets and shelling die of fear. Many people left their homes in fear and panic of the bombing,” he added.

Amal al-tawerghia, a 26-year-old from Tripoli, said: “Misrata militias bombed Tawergha camps in Tripoli, where the displaced families from Tawergha live. There are only women, elderly and children in this camp. They are not safe from the oppression of Misrata, which displaced them and seized their properties.”

Nizar Zawi from Tripoli, a 32-year-old doctor, said, “Nearly 100 people from the city of Misrata died in the fighting in Ghot Alshall in Tripoli and most of them were born in the nineties and were tricked by terrorist Salah Badi.”

“Violent clashes took place with heavy weapons in the shanty neighbourhood in Tripoli,” he added.

“And several areas suffered severe rocket attacks since the dawn of Saturday August 17. Loud explosions were heard in all parts of Tripoli, especially in the areas of the airport road and the formerly shanty neighbourhood and Ain Zara, Salahuddin, Janzur, Qasr Ben Ghashir and Omar Mukhtar Street,” he continued.

Hajja Fatima Ali said, “This is indiscriminate bombing of civilian homes and clashes between armed formations allied to the city of Misrata and other formations allied to the town of Zintan.”

University student Salem Saad Nayed said that the bombing was coming from both land and air. “We no longer know who’s bombing who,” he said.

“The bottom line, Tripoli is no longer livable. No water, no electricity and no fuel. It is lifeless, may the Lord help us and save us,” he added.

Article by Aya Elbrqawi, Magharebia.

This article was originally published here.

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