Libya: Heavy clashes erupt in eastern Tripoli

Tripoli, Libya (PANA) - Local media reports on Sunday reported heavy clashes between between rival factions on the coastal road east of the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

They said that the clashes broke out when an armed group opposed to the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli tried to approach the capital and were confronted by forces that have aligned themselves with the GNA.

The anti-GNA forces, which are aligned with a previous, self-declared government, were driven from Tripoli late in May and have been trying to regroup as the GNA recently issued a warning about a counter-attack on the capital.

Since the GNA arrived in Tripoli last year, it has co-opted some of the many armed groups in the capital. But it has made little progress integrating them, making the security situation highly volatile.

Groups aligned with the self-declared national salvation government and largely drawing on support from the western city of Misrata have battled to hold their ground.

The two sides clashed on Sunday near the coastal town of Garabulli, about 50 km east of Tripoli, the reports revealed.

GNA-aligned brigades closed the coastal road in Tajoura, an eastern suburb of Tripoli, and built sand barriers to try to block their rivals' advance.

Local authorities have advised residents to evacuate and stay away from the area and the UN mission in Libya has urged both sides to refrain from further escalating the situation.
-0- PANA VAO 10July2017

10 Julho 2017 15:55:20

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