Heavy shelling resumed in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Sunday after three days of relative calm following more than a month of street fighting between rival armed factions battling for control of the city’s airport.
The North African OPEC oil producer is facing the worst violence since the 2011 war that toppled Muammar Gaddafi, with more than 200 people killed. Many Western embassies and international companies have evacuated staff members.
Southern Tripoli was covered by black plumes of smoke, with artillery and rockets hitting areas around the international airport, where two rival brigades of ex-rebels have established front lines.
There were no immediate reports of casualties from the new exchanges. But the health ministry said it cannot reach hospitals because of power failures and gasoline shortages in Tripoli.
“We have been trying to gather information and details, but it is really hard to reach doctors,” health ministry spokesperson Ammar Mohammed said.
A United Nations delegation has been in Tripoli since Friday to try to broker a ceasefire between armed factions loyal to Islamist-allied Misrata brigades and their rivals allied to the western town of Zintan.