Libya militia agree to end fighting

2012-03-30 08:54
Tripoli - Rival militia in the southern Libyan city of Sabha have reached an agreement to end clashes that killed more than 50 people, marking a fresh attempt by the government to impose order nationwide months after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

Representatives from the militia had agreed to a ceasefire on Wednesday but some clashes resumed hours later. Trouble erupted on Sunday when the groups - one comprising fighters from Sabha, the other from the Tibu ethnic group - fell out in a minor dispute over a car, locals there had said.

Bereft of a genuine national army, the Libya's ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) has struggled to persuade the many militia who fought Gaddafi to lay down their arms and join the armed forces and police.

A delegation of officials from various government ministries travelled to Sabha to try to reach an agreement between both sides.

"The conflict parties have reached an agreement and it will be signed in the next few hours," Mohammed al-Harizy, spokesperson for the NTC, told a news conference, adding the violence had begun from a dispute over payment for former rebel fighters.

Reading out a statement, Harizy said both sides had agreed the Libyan army would take control of entry points into Sabha including the airport, scene of some of the fighting.

He said the agreement also called for Tibu fighters from outside Sabha to leave the city, adding that a separate NTC delegation was on its way to Sabha.

Government spokesperson Nasser al-Manee said on Wednesday that 3 000 soldiers and border guards had been sent to the area.

In Sabha, the scene was much quieter, Sabha fighter Oweidat al-Hifnawi said. "There was an agreement and there is no more fighting," he said by phone.

Last month, dozens of people were killed in clashes between tribes in the far south-eastern province of Al Kufra. Government forces eventually intervened to stop the fighting, in a rare example of the Tripoli government imposing its authority.

Read more on:    ntc  |  muammar gaddafi  |  libya  |  north africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.