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150 migrants feared dead off Libyan coast in possible Shipwreck

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Indiscriminate shelling kills 5 in Libyan capital

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At least five people were killed and three others wounded by indiscriminate shelling that hit the Libyan capital Tripoli on Sunday, according to a local official.

The deadly shelling took place as the fighting between the UN-backed government’s forces and the eastern-based army intensified in southern Tripoli, said Amin Hashemi, information advisor of the Ministry of Health.

The UN-backed government’s forces accused the rival eastern-based army of the shelling, to which the latter has not responded yet.

Meanwhile, the government said it killed more than 14 troops of the UN-backed government’s forces in southern Tripoli and shot down a drone in southwestern Libya.

The eastern-based army has been leading a military campaign since April 2019, attempting to take over Tripoli and topple the UN-backed government, which has killed and injured hundreds and displaced more than 150,000 others.

(XINHUA)

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UN agencies concerned about use of explosive devices against Libyan civilians

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The United Nations Children‘s Fund (UNICEF), the Libyan Mine Action Center (LibMac) and the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) on Thursday expressed concern over the use of improvised explosive devices against civilians in south of the Libyan capital Tripoli.

The United Nations Children‘s Fund (UNICEF), the Libyan Mine Action Centre (LibMac) and the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) are deeply concerned about reports that residents of the Ain Zara and Salahuddin areas of Tripoli have been exposed, killed and wounded by Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) placed in and near their homes,” a joint statement said.

The statement explained that children and adolescents are particularly exposed and at risk of explosive ordnance, stressing that those who survived a blast are likely to experience serious physical, psychological and social problems and may have their life chances affected by the consequences of the incidents.

UNICEF Special Representative in Libya Abdel-Rahman Ghandour stressed that all parties to the conflict must abide by their obligations under international humanitarian law and international human rights law, as well as the Convention on the Rights of the Child to protect children at all times.

The eastern-based army has been leading a military campaign for more than a year, trying to take control of Tripoli and topple the UN-backed government. The fighting has killed and injured hundreds of civilians and displaced more than 150,000 others.

The UN-backed government’s forces accused the eastern-based army of planting mines before withdrawing from conflict areas in southern Tripoli.

(XINHUA)

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UN provides essential medicines for Libyan women, children

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The United Nations Children‘s Fund (UNICEF) on Wednesday said it delivered essential medicines to western Libyan cities to benefit 20,000 people including women and children.

UNICEF tweeted that “20,000 persons including women and children will benefit from lifesaving and essential medicines that have been dispatched” to the municipalities of Surman, Sabratha, Alzawya and Zwara.

“The supplies that include vaccines carriers, obstetric kits and cold boxes are essential to ensure that quality primary health and lifesaving Maternal, new-born and child health care are strengthened to avoid preventable morbidity and mortality among vulnerable populations,” it said.

UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) recently said that more than 250,000 children in war-torn Libya face the risk of vaccine-preventable diseases.

Western Libya saw more than a year of violent fightings between the eastern-based army and the UN-backed government, in which hundreds of civilians were killed and injured, and more than 150,000 others displaced.

Amid escalating violence and unrest, hospitals and medical centers in Libya have been struggling to provide proper medical care to the Libyan people.

(XINHUA)

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Tunisian defense minister, British ambassador discuss Libyan crisis

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Tunisian Defense Minister Imed Hazgui received on Wednesday British Ambassador to Tunisia Louise De Sousa at the ministry’s headquarters in the capital Tunis, reported Tunis Afrique Presse (TAP).

The meeting focused on ways to strengthen military cooperation between the two countries as well as developments on the regional scene.

The Tunisian minister stressed the need to promote military cooperation and to diversify its components in an atmosphere of mutual trust.

Hazgui reiterated Tunisia’s position which calls for a rapid and comprehensive solution to the crisis in Libya via national dialogue and within the framework of respect for international legitimacy.

“The solution to the Libyan crisis should be based on the agreement of all its factions away from any foreign interference,” TAP quoted the minister as saying.

For her part, the British diplomat hailed Tunisia’s success in confronting the coronavirus pandemic.

She affirmed her country’s readiness to strengthen the capacities of the Tunisian army in all areas and to promote cooperation between the two countries.

(XINHUA)

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90 illegal immigrants rescued off Libyan coast: IOM

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The International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Tuesday said that another 90 illegal immigrants were rescued off the Libyan coast.

“Last night, 90 migrants were rescued by a commercial vessel and returned to Libya. They spent the night onboard the ship and are awaiting clarity on disembarkation,” IOM tweeted.

IOM reiterated that “Libya is not a safe port” for disembarkation of rescued migrants.

IOM said earlier Monday that at least five boats carrying nearly 400 people attempted to flee Libya during the previous 48 hours.

After the fall of Muammar Gaddafi’s government in 2011, Libya has become a preferred point of departure for thousands of illegal immigrants hoping to cross the Mediterranean towards European shores.

Immigrant shelters in Libya are crowded with thousands of immigrants either rescued from the sea or arrested by Libyan security forces, despite international calls to close them.

(XINHUA)

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Libyan Coast Guard rescues more than 300 illegal immigrants

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The Libyan Coast Guard rescued more than 300 illegal immigrants and brought them back to the capital Tripoli, the United Nations Higher Commission of Refugees (UNHCR) said Monday.

“Today at dawn, Libyan Coast Guard returned to Tripoli 315 refugees and migrants after being intercepted/rescued at sea aboard several boats,” the UNHCR tweeted.

“Two persons lost their lives and their bodies were recovered. UNHCR partner IRC (International Rescue Committee) was on site to provide urgent medical care to all survivors,” the UNHCR said.

At least five boats carrying nearly 400 people attempted to flee Libya during the previous 48 hours, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said earlier Monday.

The IOM reiterated call for ending returns of rescued migrants to Libya and establishing a safe alternative disembarkation mechanism.

After the fall of the late leader Gaddafi’s government in 2011, Libya has become a preferred point of departure for thousands of illegal immigrants hoping to cross the Mediterranean towards European shores.

(XINHUA)

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Libyan government takes 3 military camps from rebels in southern Tripoli

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The UN-backed Libyan government’s forces on Saturday said it took over three military camps from the rival eastern-based army in the south of the capital Tripoli, as the armed conflict between the two rivals continued.

“Our forces took control of Al-Yarmuk, Hamza and the Missiles camps and are pursuing the fleeing militias of Haftar (commander of the eastern-based army),” Mohamed Gonono, spokesman of the UN-backed government’s forces, said in a statement.

“The military engineering teams are clearing mines laid by Haftar’s militia,” the statement said.

The UN-backed government’s forces have been making significant progress against the eastern-based army lately, taking over military camps and cities in western Libya.

A war has been going on since April 2019 between the UN-backed government and eastern-based army, which is trying to take over Tripoli and topple the UN-backed government, despite repeated international calls for cease-fire.

Hundreds of civilians were killed and injured in the fighting with more than 150,000 others displaced.

(XINHUA)

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Libyan govt forces tighten noose on rival city amid UN concern

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Forces aligned with Libya’s internationally recognised government are tightening their siege to capture a major city from rivals, raising United Nations concerns.

Forces of the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) dropped leaflets on the city of Tarhouna, about 90 kilometres from the capital Tripoli, and asked insurgents there to lay down their arms.

“Whoever lays down his arm is safe. The battle has been militarily resolved,’’ the GNA forces said on their Twitter account.

The city’s residents were urged to stay indoors and shun the places where the insurgents are.

The rival self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Khalifa Haftar took control of Tarhouna following the start of their campaign in April 2019 to seize Tripoli from GNA.

Capturing Tarhouna would be a major victory for the GNA forces, who have recently made territorial gains against Haftar’s loyalists in the western part of Libya.

The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) voiced concern about the military developments around Tarhouna.

UNSMIL reminds all parties of their obligations in accordance with international humanitarian law and warns against any acts of retribution,’’ the mission tweeted.

Fighting has recently escalated between Libya’s warring sides in spite of international calls for a humanitarian truce in the country to focus efforts on battling an outbreak of the new coronavirus.

Earlier this week, GNA forces seized al-Watiya airbase, near the Tunisian border, a strategic base in Haftar’s offensive to capture Tripoli.

Oil-rich Libya has been in turmoil since a 2011 revolt that toppled long-time dictator Muamar Gaddafi and has become a battleground for rival proxy forces.

Edited By: Ese E. Ekama (NAN)

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye (NAN)

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UN-backed Libyan govt air forces destroy Haftar’s missile defense system – Source

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The UN-backed Government of National Accord’s (GNA) forces have destroyed a Panstir-type air defense system belonging to the Libyan National Army (LNA) in the country’s northwestern town of Tarhuna.

A military source affiliated with the GNA made this known to Sputnik on Wednesday.

In the early hours of Wednesday, LNA Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar decided to withdraw his troops some two miles from the front, near the capital of Tripoli, on the eve of the Eid al-Fitr Muslim holiday.

The holiday runs this year from May 23-24. The LNA also expects the same move from the GNA.

“As part of the GNA’s Volcano of Rage operation, a drone attacked the Pantsir air defense system in the al-Kaniyat military camp in the town of Tarhuna,” the source said.

A similar incident was reported earlier this week when airstrikes were conducted against the LNA south of Sirte and resulted in the destruction of another Pantsir system.

The complexes are produced in Russia but supplied to Libya by the United Arab Emirates.

Libya has been torn between the two rival administrations — an elected parliament in the country’s east, supported by the LNA, and the GNA in the country’s west — since 2011, when long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown and killed by US-supported Islamic extremists.

In April 2019, the eastern-based LNA resumed efforts to drive the Turkish-backed GNA away from Tripoli.

The GNA responded by conducting the so-called Volcano of Rage offensive.

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

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Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

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