22 killed in Benghazi double car bomb attack

Death toll could rise as two cars explode 30 minutes apart in front of mosque in Al Sleimani

Members of the demining team of the Libyan National Army search for mines, in Benghazi, Libya January 14, 2018.

Benghazi: The death toll following a double car bomb attack in the Libyan city of Benghazi on Tuesday night has risen to at least 22, a hospital spokeswoman said.

A further 20 people were injured and the number of fatalities could rise, Fadia Al Barghathi, spokeswoman for the city’s Al Jala hospital, told AFP.

An explosives-rigged vehicle blew up in front of a mosque in the central neighbourhood of Al Sleimani, a security source said.

A second car exploded 30 minutes later in the same area, causing more casualties among security services and civilians.

Libya has been rocked by chaos since a 2011 uprising that toppled and killed dictator Muammar Gaddafi, with two rival authorities and multiple militias vying for control of the oil-rich country.

Military strongman Khalifa Haftar in July announced the “total liberation” of Benghazi, three years after his forces launched a military operation to seize the city from jihadists who had made it a stronghold following the revolution.

But clashes and attacks in the city have continued, including against diplomatic facilities and security forces.

Haftar supports a parliament based in the far east of Libya, while a rival United Nations-backed unity government in the western capital Tripoli has struggled to assert its authority nationwide.

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