UNHCR says nearly 120,000 displaced by conflict in Libya's Tripoli

Read: 502     13:17     18 July 2019    

The United Nations Higher Commission of Refugees (UNHCR) on Wednesday said that nearly 120,000 people were displaced by the armed conflict in the Libyan capital Tripoli.

"Numbers of forced displacement in Libya haven't stopped swelling since the raging conflict over Tripoli sparked early April 2019, pushing over 120,000 Libyans to leave their houses and seek refuge in and around the capital," the commission said in a statement.

The eastern-based army has been leading a military campaign since early April to take over Tripoli from the government.

According to the World Health Organization, the fighting has so far killed more than 1,000 people and injured more than 5,700 others.

In eastern Libya, hundreds of thousands of people also fled their homes due to years of fighting between the eastern-based army and extremist groups, UNHCR said.

"In Al-Sabri Al-Sharqi district in Benghazi's old town, the war left a landscape of striking dimensions. Entire neighborhoods were brought to the ground, buildings collapsed, and mountains of rubble stand as an improvised playground for children, and sometimes as a shelter for families with no means of support," UNHCR explained.

Benghazi, the second largest city of Libya and birthplace of the 2011 uprising that toppled former leader Muammar Gaddafi, witnessed a fierce war between the eastern-based army led by Khalifa Haftar and extremist groups.

In June 2017, Haftar announced the takeover of Benghazi and defeat of the rival armed groups in the city.

Libya has been suffering escalating violence and political instability ever since the fall of Gaddafi's regime in 2011.



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