Published: December 03, 2019
The Libyan Health Ministry Spokesman Amin al-Hashemi in a statement on December 2 said that at least five civilians were killed and 10 were wounded in overnight airstrikes in a suburb of Libya's capital, Tripoli. He further reported major damage after the strikes on al-Swani which is situated about 25 kilometres south of central Tripoli. There was no military infrastructure in the area, he added. Since eastern-based military strongman Khalifa Haftar launched an April offensive to seize Tripoli from armed groups backing the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA), there have been deadly fighting in the area with frequent airstrikes.
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Drones backed by UAE conducted the strikes
Emirati drones backing Haftar had carried out the overnight strikes which killed a woman and a child amongst the casualties said the GNA. More inputs were added by Spokesman Mohammad Gnounou who said that an unmanned Emirati aircraft had also carried out two raids on a bridge west of Tripoli. UAE has backed Haftar in his campaign against pro-GNA groups, which Haftar's forces refer to as "terrorists". The strikes are yet to claimed by Haftar's self-styled Libyan National Army or any other group.
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UN calls for ceasefire
Libya has been facing unrest since multiple armed groups, some of which are backed by foreign power turned to violence since the fall and killing of longtime dictator Moamer Kadhafi in 2011 in a NATO-backed uprising. About 200 civilians and more than 2,000 fighters have been killed in the conflicts. Some 1,46,000 people have been displaced. The United Nations has renewed orders for ceasefire in Libya urging foreign actors to honour an arms embargo on the country which Jordan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates have regularly violated. A joint declaration issued following several days of negotiations read that the Members of the Security Council stressed the need for all parties urgently to de-escalate the situation and to commit to a ceasefire. The declaration further called on all states not to intervene in the conflict or to take measures that would exacerbate the conflict calling for full compliance with the arms embargo imposed in 2011.
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(With inputs from agencies)
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