News / Middle East

Gunmen Kill Libya's Military Police Commander

Various army special forces trucks arrive at scene after fighting broke out near offices of the Libya Shield pro-government militia, Benghazi, Libya, June 8, 2013.
Various army special forces trucks arrive at scene after fighting broke out near offices of the Libya Shield pro-government militia, Benghazi, Libya, June 8, 2013.
Reuters
Gunmen shot dead Libya's military police force commander in the restive eastern city of Benghazi as he was about attend Friday prayers, a security source said, triggering a violent response from residents.
 
The attack is the latest blow to a weak Libyan government that is struggling to assert control over militias and radical Islamists two years after the fall of Moammar Gadhafi.
 
Unknown gunmen opened fire on Ahmed al-Barghathi as he left his house to go to a mosque. “He was brought to hospital but later died there,” the source said.
 
Several army officers have been assassinated in Benghazi, where the U.S. ambassador was killed during an Islamist assault on a U.S. diplomatic mission a year ago. The shooting of Barghathi, who was on vacation in the city, is the highest profile attack there for weeks.
 
Several hours after the shooting, dozens of residents joined members of Barghathi's tribe in storming the house of prominent militia leader Wissam Ben Hamid, witnesses said. His house was set ablaze but there were no immediate reports of casualties.
 
Some of the protesters accused Hamid, leader of the Libya Shield Brigade, of having a role in the killing of Barghathi, who had been trying to restore order in Benghazi and elsewhere.
 
Libya Shield, an umbrella of former rebels who say they are now allied to the defense ministry, was not immediately available for comment.
 
In June, at least 31 people were killed in clashes between the militia and armed protesters who demanded that the group disarm. Many ordinary Libyans are fed up with armed young men roaming the streets.
 
The government has been unable to disarm myriad militias and radical Islamists in a country awash with guns from the Gadhafi era and foreign weapons supplied in 2011 to help the Western-backed uprising.
 
Last week, former rebels briefly seized Prime Minister Ali Zeidan from the Tripoli hotel where he lives during a dawn raid, only to release him hours later.
 
The gunmen who snatched Zeidan — former anti-Gadhafi rebels now on the government payroll — said they were angry at reports the government had been informed in advance of a U.S. raid to capture an al-Qaida suspect in Libya. Zeidan called the kidnapping a coup attempt.
 
Zeidan, a liberal, has come under pressure for failing to improve public services since Gadhafi's overthrow and has faced a wave of strikes and protests that have closed most oil ports in the OPEC producer.

You May Like

Arrested Football Officials Come Mainly From the Americas

US Justice Department alleges defendants participated in 24-year scheme to enrich themselves through corruption of international soccer More

Video Kenyans Lament Al-Shabab's Recruitment of Youths

VOA travels to Isiolo, where residents share their fears, struggles to get loved ones back from Somalia-based militant group More

This US Epidemic Keeps Getting Worse

One in 4 Americans suffers from this condition More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensionsi
X
May 26, 2015 11:11 PM
When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.

VOA Blogs