Emergency, general strike in Tripoli after clashes

Libya's Prime Minister called for calm, but his armed forces struggle to control militias and other former fighters who refuse to surrender their arms after helping to oust Gaddafi

Emergency, general strike in Tripoli after clashes

World Bulletin/News Desk

Municipality authorities in the Libyan capital Tripoli have announced a three-day general strike, beginning Sunday, to mourn victims of deadly clashes between locals and militiamen.

In a statement published by the state-run news agency, the authorities said the strike will include all public and private sectors.

They urged residents, however, to exercise self-restraint and avoid attacks on people and properties.

In a separate statement, Operations Room of Libya's Revolutionaries, an armed group now affiliated to the Libyan army, declared a 48-hour state of emergency in Tripoli as of Sunday.

It said the move was coordinated with the Army Chief of Staff and the Interior Ministry to restore law and order.

At least one person was killed and four others wounded on Saturday in renewed clashes between militias and the residents of the eastern Tripoli neighborhood of Tajoura.

This came one day after 48 people, including 32 civilians, were killed in deadly clashes between Libyan protesters and militias during mass protests to demand that armed militias leave the capital.

Prime Minister Ali Zeidan has urged the locals to exercise self-restraint.

"I urge that no forces enter Tripoli," he said. "It would have catastrophic consequences."

Libyans have struggled to restore law and order to their country since the death of longstanding strongman Muammar Gaddafi two years ago.

The transitional government and its security forces have also struggled to contain the armed militias that helped overthrow Gaddafi, but which held onto their weapons after the 2011 uprising.

Last Mod: 17 Kasım 2013, 15:41
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