At least 23 dead after conflict erupts between militias in Libya

Deadly clashes broke out Saturday in Libya’s capital between militias backed by its two rival administrations, portending a return to violence amid a long political stalemate.

At least 23 people were killed and more than 140 wounded in the fighting, the health ministry said.

Six hospitals were hit and ambulances were unable to reach areas affected by the clashes, the ministry had said earlier, condemning “war crimes”.

The escalation threatens to shatter the relative calm Libya has enjoyed for most of the past two years. The oil-rich nation was sent into chaos after a Nato-backed uprising that toppled and killed longtime autocrat Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

Among the fatalities was Mustafa Baraka, a comedian known for his social media videos mocking militias and corruption. Baraka died after being shot in the chest, according to Malek Merset, an emergency services spokesperson.

Merset said emergency services struggled to evacuate wounded and civilians trapped in the fighting that…

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This article was written by Associated Press in Cairo and originally published on