Libya's new parliament calls for unity as rival militias clash




 
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Libya's new parliament calls for unity as rival militias clash
 
August 5th, 2014  
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Topic: Libya's new parliament calls for unity as rival militias clash


Libya's new parliament calls for unity as rival militias clash
By Patrick Markey and Aziz El Yaakoubi TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Libya's new parliament appealed for national unity at its first formal session on Monday as rival armed factions battled for dominance of a country struggling to hold itself together three years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi. Hours before parliament met in the eastern city of Tobruk, heavy artillery and rocket fire bombarded southern and western Tripoli, where Islamist-leaning Misrata brigades have fought for three weeks with rival militias allied with the town of Zintan. Lawmakers gathered in a heavily guarded hotel in Tobruk because three weeks of fighting in Tripoli and Benghazi had made Libya's two main cities unsafe for the parliamentary session. Western nations, which have mostly pulled their diplomats out of the North African country due to the fighting, hope that the new assembly can nudge the warring factions toward a ceasefire and negotiations to end a political deadlock.




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