Senior Andean Correspondent
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Jul 31, 2014

Town vs. town, faction vs. faction as Libya descends into ‘hurricane’

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Booms of outgoing artillery shaking the ground, militia fighters from the remote Libyan mountain town of Zintan hunker down in the passenger terminal to defend Tripoli airport, the biggest prize in the capital.

Across the city a few kilometers away, a commander of a brigade from the port city of Misrata rallies his men to take the airport back.

Jul 31, 2014

Heavy shelling, clashes spread in Libya’s Tripoli

TRIPOLI, July 31 (Reuters) – Clashes with artillery and
rockets spread on Thursday into two Tripoli districts, where
rival militia brigades were battling over the airport in Libya’s
worst fighting since the 2011 revolt that ousted Muammar

Nearly 200 people have been killed since the violence
erupted two weeks ago in Tripoli and also in the eastern city of
Benghazi, where a coalition of Islamist militants and former
rebels has overrun a major army base in the city.

Jul 28, 2014

Huge blaze out of control in Tripoli battle as Libya slides into chaos

TRIPOLI, July 28 (Reuters) – A huge fuel depot in Libya’s
capital burned out of control on Monday, set ablaze in fighting
between rival militias that has driven the country to chaos
three years after the NATO-backed revolt that toppled Muammar

Combat over control of the nearby airport forced
firefighters to withdraw, abandoning their attempts to
extinguish the blaze ignited by a missile strike that hit
millions of litres of fuel.

Jul 28, 2014

Rocket ignites blaze near Tripoli airport, Libya in chaos

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – A rocket hit a fuel storage tank in a chaotic battle for Tripoli airport that has all but closed off international flights to Libya, leaving fire-fighters struggling to extinguish a giant conflagration.

Foreign governments have looked on powerless as anarchy sweeps across the North African oil producer, three years after NATO bombardment helped topple dictator Muammar Gaddafi. They have urged nationals to leave Libya and have pulled diplomats out after two weeks of clashes among rival factions killed nearly 160 people in Tripoli and the eastern city of Benghazi.

Jul 26, 2014

U.S. evacuates Libya embassy after ‘free-wheeling’ militia violence

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – The United States evacuated its embassy in Libya on Saturday, driving its staff under heavy military guard across the border to Tunisia after escalating clashes broke out between rival militias in Tripoli.

Security in the Libyan capital has deteriorated following two weeks of fighting between brigades of former rebel fighters who have exchanged rocket, cannon and artillery fire in southern Tripoli near the embassy compound.

Jul 25, 2014

Libya seeks ceasefire as south Tripoli a militia ‘war zone’

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Black plumes of smoke marked shell blasts and bulldozed earthen barricades mapped out the frontlines around Tripoli’s largest airport, now at the heart of a standoff between the country’s powerful militias.

With barrages of Grad rockets, anti-aircraft guns and artillery fired at their rival enclaves just kilometers apart, brigades of former rebels have turned parts of southern Tripoli in a battleground for nearly a fortnight.

Jul 24, 2014

Rival Libyan militias clash in Tripoli, Benghazi

TRIPOLI, July 24 (Reuters) – Heavy black smoke rose over
southern Tripoli on Thursday after rival militias exchanged
artillery and rocket fire in a battle over the Libyan capital’s
airport that has killed more than 50 people in nearly a
fortnight of fighting.

Sporadic blasts echoed across the city from the morning in
clashes that have deepened fears of post-war Libya becoming a
failed state, with a fragile government unable to control
heavily armed brigades battling for power.

Jul 16, 2014

Mali peace talks start in Algiers after prisoner swap

ALGIERS (Reuters) – Mali’s government and rebels were holding peace talks in Algiers on Wednesday intended to end decades of uprisings by northern Tuareg tribes after an exchange of prisoners helped to get the negotiations started.

Mali’s vast desert north – called Azawad by the rebels – has risen up four times since independence from France in 1960, most recently last year, when French forces intervened to drive back Islamists who had taken advantage of a Tuareg-led rebellion and were advancing on the south.

Jul 2, 2014

Libya declares oil crisis over after state reclaims ports

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Libya’s acting Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni said the government had reached a deal with a rebel leader controlling oil ports to hand over the last two terminals and end a blockade that crippled the OPEC nation’s petroleum industry.

“We have successfully reached an agreement to solve the oil crisis. We have received today Ras Lanuf and Es Sider oil ports thankfully without the use of force,” Thinni said at Ras Lanuf terminal in eastern Libya. “I officially declare this is the end of the oil crisis.”

Jun 30, 2014

Kidnapped Tunisian embassy workers freed in Libya

TUNIS, June 30 (Reuters) – A Tunisian diplomat and an
embassy worker kidnapped earlier this year by unknown gunmen in
Libya arrived at dawn on Monday at a Tunis airport after being
freed on Sunday.

With Libya’s government weak and its armed forces still in
formation, armed groups have targeted foreign diplomats for
abduction this year to pressure for the release of Libyan
militants held in jails overseas.

    • About Pat

      "Patrick Markey is the Senior Andean Correspondent for Reuters, based in Bogota, Colombia. For the last nine years he has covered and helped manage coverage across the Andean region, including Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador. He has also reported on top stories across Latin America, including more recently the Honduras coup and Haiti's earthquake."
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