Wednesday, 22/1/2020 | 4:42 UTC+0
Libyan Newswire

Libya: UN voices concern over continued violence in Murzuq as airstrike kills more than 40

TRIPOLI An airstrike killed more than 40 people and injured more than 50 others in the southern Libyan city of Murzuq on Sunday, a local official said.

A building in central Murzuq where hundreds of people gathered for reconciliation meeting between rival parties in the city was suddenly attacked, killing more than 40 people and injuring more than 50 others, Mohamed Omar, council member of the Murzuq municipality, told Xinhua.

Omar confirmed that those killed were all civilians and said no military positions in the city were targeted by the airstrike.

The UN-backed government condemned the attack, calling the UN Support Mission in Libya and the international community to assume their responsibility and investigate the crimes committed by the militias in Murzuq.

The eastern-based rebel army, which has been controlling Murzuq since February, announced the launching of airstrikes on Chadian militants around the Murzuq city but denied targeting civilians.

The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) expressed concern over continued violence and airstrikes in Murzuq.

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) is extremely concerned by reports on the continuation of acts of violence in Murzuq, including of a number of airstrikes last night which resulted in many deaths and injuries amongst civilians, the mission said in a statement.

UNSMIL also expresses grave concern over the ongoing communal violence in Murzuq, which has in the past few days led to the deaths of around 20 people and injuries of many others, the statement said, calling for restraint, dialogue and peaceful solutions to address differences in this region.

UNSMIL reiterates its call for a truce to begin on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha, the statement added.

Since early April, there has been intense fighting between the government and the east-based rebel army, which is trying to take over the capital Tripoli and overthrow the government.

The fighting so far has killed more than 1,000 people, injured more than 5,700 others, and forced more than 120,000 people to flee their homes, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Libya has been mired in conflicts and chaos ever since the fall of former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.