UN Mission deplores terrorist attack in eastern Libya

December 31, 2014 10:23 am 

UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 31 — The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) on Tuesday strongly deplored a terrorist attack that targeted a hotel in Tobruk, a city in eastern Libya, where Libya's elected parliament was in session, stressing that "violence will not solve Libya's problems," a UN spokesman told reporters here.

"The mission says that the act will only increase the determination of those Libyans seeking a political solution to forge ahead with their efforts to bring stability and security to Libya," the spokesman said.

"UNSMIL once again stresses that violence will not solve Libya' s problems," the spokesman said. "The Mission urges Libyans to desist from violence and to seek to resolve their political and security crises through dialogue."

Earlier Tuesday, a suicide bomber detonated a car equipped with explosives, wounding at least 11 people, including three deputies, reports said.

The bombing appears to be the biggest attack against the Libyan parliament since it moved to the eastern city of Tobruk, along the border with Egypt, to escape the unprecedented levels of violence afflicting the North African country.

The House of Representatives in Tobruk is allied to the internationally recognized government of Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni, who was also forced to relocate after Libya Dawn took control of Tripoli, the Libyan capital.

Libya Dawn has established its own parliament in Tripoli, though this has not been recognized by world powers.

The attack — the latest spell of violence to rattle the beleaguered nation following the beginning of its civil war in 2011 which resulted in the ouster of late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi — comes on the heels of last week's militant aggression against an oil installation in Sidra which left numerous storage tanks ablaze and at least 20 soldiers dead as well as last weekend 's government air strikes against militant positions in the city of Misrata.

At the same time, recent fighting in the neighboring Nafusa mountains has left 170 people dead.

In addition to the casualties, the fighting has also caused a humanitarian crisis with at least 120,000 people forced to flee their homes, resulting in shortages in both food and medical supplies.

Meanwhile, in the eastern city of Benghazi, an uptick in violence has seen 450 people killed since October as residents continue to face shortages in medical care. Moreover, some 90,000 people have been displaced. (PNA/Xinhua)

LGI/JSD

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