Rival Militias Battle in Tripoli

Chaos and crime are taking over in Libya as concern for civil war rises

Rival militias in Libya fought an extended gun battle in the capital Tripoli on Wednesday, in yet another sign of how unstable the NATO mission that removed former leader Muammar Gadhafi has left the country.

Both heavy and light weapons were heard from the battle as ambulances rushed to the area and plumes of smoke rose from buildings after the 40 minute long fight.

An Interior Ministry official said the fighting was between militias from the city of Misrata and units from Zintan. Both groups were supported by the NATO mission and fought to oust Gadhafi and now use their weapons and relative autonomy to gain influence in Libya’s fledgling government.

Libya’s interim government has still not been able to assert control over the country and continuing unrest among the militias as well as growing distaste for the rule of the National Transitional Council is leading to concerns about a burgeoning civil war.

Aid groups recently suspended operations in Libya after finding evidence of widespread torture and human rights violations by both the NTC and the militias. Although the Obama administration tried to take credit for the regime change in Libya back when “democracy” was still believed to take place, but they refuse to take place for it now that chaos and crimes are taking place.

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Author: John Glaser

John Glaser writes for Antiwar.com.