First Published: 2012-11-07


Clashes erupt after car blast in Libya's Benghazi


Two police officers wounded in clashes with suspect behind car explosion near police station in Libyan city.


Middle East Online

Gathafi's loyalists eyeing Libya's fledgling security forces

BENGHAZI, Libya, - A car exploded near a police station in Libya's eastern city of Benghazi late Tuesday, a police officer said, adding that two of his colleagues were injured in subsequent clashes.

The attack came as the country's new authorities try to empower the national army and police but struggle to rein in armed militias born out of the 2011 conflict that toppled long-time dictator Moamer Gathafi.

The vehicle belonged to a police officer who was posted in the area of Ras Obeida, the same source said on condition of anonymity.

There were no casualties or major material damage from the blast, which was believed to have been sparked by a hand grenade or fishing explosives.

But two policemen were later injured in a gunfight with the key suspect.

"One of them is in a critical condition and the other was hit on his foot," said the police officer, adding that the suspect had escaped.

The explosion ripped off the nose of the vehicle which had been parked outside the officer's home, just behind the Ras Obeida police station, an AFP journalist said.

The Mediterranean city of Benghazi, cradle of the 2011 uprising against Gathafi, has endured several blasts, while a September 11 attack by militants on the US mission in Benghazi killed four Americans, including ambassador Chris Stevens.

The city has also witnessed a wave of assassinations, targeting officials with links to the former regime, which are often blamed on hardline Islamists.

On Tuesday, also in Benghazi, the bullet ridden corpse of retired colonel Abdelkarim Mahfud, who backed the 2011 revolution, was found in his farm.

Libya successfully held its first elections in July, following 42 years of dictatorship, but the new authorities are hard pressed to provide security in the face of widespread arms and a weak security apparatus.


New report accuses Syria of chemical attack in Qmenas village

For second day, Iraq forces clash with ISIS in Kirkuk

Battles rage in Yemen despite three-day truce

Turkey PM warns EU: Turkey has alternatives!

Food crisis reaching critical levels north of South Sudan

Turkey hits Kurdish group in Syria again

Kremlin aims to 'liberate' Syria with Assad in power

Egypt court upholds 20-year sentence for Morsi

Islamic Jihad stages show of force in Gaza

UN says 'crimes' in Aleppo are 'of historic proportions'

IS sniper kills Iraqi journalist in Kirkuk

US official says coalition should target IS in Raqa after Mosul

Moscow extends Aleppo ceasefire

Italy PM says officials should have voted against UNESCO Jerusalem resolution

Syrian ‘Toy Smuggler’ accused of fraud

UN: IS may use civilians as human shields in Mosul

Armed men attack refugee boat off Libya

US says will work with Turkey to deal IS 'lasting defeat'

Moscow ‘highly concerned’ at jihadists’ refusal to leave Aleppo

Four Palestinians arrested by their security forces for settlement visit

Mauritania president says no change to two-term limit

UN delays Aleppo evacuations due to lack of security assurances

Oman denies reports of arms smuggling to Yemen

Israel looking to buy three more German submarines

83 migrants rescued off Cyprus

Under pressure in Mosul, IS fighters attack Kirkuk

Air strikes hit Yemen rebels despite ceasefire

US officials: Iran boosting arms sales to Huthis via Oman

Iraq forces make gains against IS near Mosul

Arab coalition accuses Yemen rebels of breaching truce

Italian PM blocks EU sanctions threat against Russia over Aleppo

Pentagon chief in Turkey for talks on tensions with Iraq

Israeli occupation troops kill Palestinian teenager

Iraqis flee IS-held Mosul for war-torn Syria

Five years after his death, Kadhafi's 'Green Book' is ridiculed in Libya

Iraq issues warrant for former governor of Mosul

EU leaders threaten sanctions against Assad allies

Syria army urges residents to evacuate Aleppo during ceasefire

British warships shadow Syria-bound Russian naval force

Turkey unexpectedly keeps interest rate steady

British PM urges united EU response to Russia over Syria 'atrocities'

UN gets ‘green light’ from all parties for Aleppo evacuations

Iran president: we must be hospitable to foreign businessmen

British Al-Jazeera reporter freed in Somalia

Turkish planes raid US-backed Kurdish militias