libya

22 killed in Benghazi double car bomb attack

Death toll could rise as two cars explode 30 minutes apart in front of mosque in Al Sleimani

AFP
04:19 January 24, 2018
Members of the demining team of the Libyan National Army search for mines, in Benghazi, Libya Januar

Benghazi: The death toll following a double car bomb attack in the Libyan city of Benghazi on Tuesday night has risen to at least 22, a hospital spokeswoman said.

A further 20 people were injured and the number of fatalities could rise, Fadia Al Barghathi, spokeswoman for the city’s Al Jala hospital, told AFP.

An explosives-rigged vehicle blew up in front of a mosque in the central neighbourhood of Al Sleimani, a security source said.

A second car exploded 30 minutes later in the same area, causing more casualties among security services and civilians.

Libya has been rocked by chaos since a 2011 uprising that toppled and killed dictator Muammar Gaddafi, with two rival authorities and multiple militias vying for control of the oil-rich country.

Military strongman Khalifa Haftar in July announced the “total liberation” of Benghazi, three years after his forces launched a military operation to seize the city from jihadists who had made it a stronghold following the revolution.

But clashes and attacks in the city have continued, including against diplomatic facilities and security forces.

Haftar supports a parliament based in the far east of Libya, while a rival United Nations-backed unity government in the western capital Tripoli has struggled to assert its authority nationwide.