Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Libya: Clashes between rival factions leave seven dead

According to numerous reports, seven people have been killed in confrontations between rival factions in the coastal city of Zawiya. Rival groups have been fighting for an area previously controlled by Colonel Mu'ammar Qadhafi.

The National Transitional Council (NTC) has said that the conflict has been resolved, however, many are concerned about the country's stability. Libya is replete with weapons and highly armed groups, who fought in the rebellion against Qadhafi's 40 year rule.

Interim leader Mustafa Abdul-Jalil said the NTC had brought together the elders from the feuding areas in order to resolve the conflict. Speaking about the issue on Sunday 13th November he said: "I want to assure the Libyan people that everything is under control."

Despite reassurances, witnesses claim that fighting in some areas is still ongoing. According to various reports, trouble flared up on Thursday 10th Novemenr when fighters from Warshefana set up a checkpoint on a highway near Zawiya, challenging other fighters from the city.

Jalil said the trouble had been started by "young men behaving irresponsibly" and that the NTC had established a committee to address the grievances of both sides. NTC leaders have said they cannot quickly disarm the various factions across the country.

Sources: BBC News, WST, AP

For more news and expert analysis about Libya, please see Libya Focus and Libya Politics & Security.

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