Three dead as fierce clashes between army, militants engulf Benghazi

Published November 25th, 2013 - 07:23 GMT
Smoke billows over residential neighbourhoods in Benghazi, following fierce clashes between the army and militants in the eastern Libyan city. (Image courtesy of Twitter/Wajid Saadi)
Smoke billows over residential neighbourhoods in Benghazi, following fierce clashes between the army and militants in the eastern Libyan city. (Image courtesy of Twitter/Wajid Saadi)

Fierce clashes and gunfighting between Libyan state troops and Islamist militants in the eastern city of Benghazi killed at least three people and wounded dozens more during a military operation, Libyan sources reported Monday. 

Speaking to Reuters, witnesses said that gunfire and loud explosions could be heard across the restive city from the Ras Obeida area. 

Libya's new military has struggled to control the Islamist militants and scores of militia groups who fought against the NATO-backed uprising against tyrant dictator Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The groups refuse to disarm themselves, despite Gaddafi being toppled from power two years ago. 

The clashes come hours after US Secretary of State John Kerry and his British counterpart, William Hague, pledged to help the Libyan government restore stability across the country

According to reports on Twitter, residents in Benghazi are being urged to stay indoors and all schools and universities have temporarily suspended their classes.


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