5 Libyan cops injured in suicide bombing

2014-06-12 09:07

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Benghazi - A car bomb exploded at a police station in Libya's second city Benghazi late Wednesday, leaving the suicide bomber dead and five police officers injured, security officials said.

"A suicide attack took place Wednesday evening at the Berses post and, according to preliminary information, there are a number of victims of the explosion," local security service spokesman Ibrahim Al-Sharaa told AFP.

Later, the station commander Suleiman Al-Agouri confirmed the death of the unknown bomber and that five of his officers had been injured.

He added that there had been a large amount of explosives in the car.

"The explosion created a big crater" in the ground, he said.

Police officer Khaled Al-Agouri said the attack happened when the suicide bomber "drove a refrigerated lorry which he exploded upon arrival at the post".

He added that one of the officers had lost a leg in the blast.

'Operation dignity'

It was the second suicide attack against the police station in the western Libyan city. An attack there last December left 13 people dead.

Benghazi was the cradle of the 2011 uprising that ended Muammar Gaddafi’s four-decade rule, and has since been plagued by violence that has killed dozens of members of the security forces, as well as judges and foreigners.

Militants have also attacked foreign missions in Benghazi, including a September 2012 assault on the US consulate in the Mediterranean city that killed the ambassador and three other Americans.

Last month, former general and long-time US exile Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive in the city dubbed "Operation Dignity", aimed at eradicating jihadist "terrorists".

Haftar has been branded an "outlaw" by Libya's interim authorities, while his Islamist detractors have accused him of leading a coup - a claim he denies.

Last week, Haftar escaped an assassination bid, but three of his aides were killed when a suicide bomber attacked a villa outside Benghazi where he was holding a meeting.

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