Cautious calm prevails in Tripoli amid emergency state general strike

Cautious calm prevails in Tripoli amid emergency state general strike

first_imgTRIPOLI – Only police stations, hospitals, gas stations and bakeries opened their doors.A state of cautious calm prevailed in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Tuesday as a state of emergence and general strike went into effect following deadly clashes between locals and militiamen.All government offices, schools and universities were shut down on the first day of a three-day general strike declared by local authorities to mourn the victims of clashes that erupted over the weekend in the capital.Only police stations, hospitals, gas stations and bakeries opened their doors.In a statement published by the state-run news agency Saturday, municipality authorities said the strike would include all public and private sectors.They urged residents to exercise self-restraint and avoid attacks on people and properties.The Operations Room of Libya’s Revolutionaries, an armed group now affiliated to the Libyan army, has declared a 48-hour state of emergency in Tripoli as of Sunday.It said the move was coordinated with the Army Chief of Staff and the Interior Ministry to restore law and order.At least one person was killed and four others wounded on Saturday in renewed clashes between militias and the residents of the eastern Tripoli neighborhood of Tajoura.This came one day after 48 people, including 32 civilians, were killed in deadly clashes between Libyan protesters and militias during mass protests to demand that armed militias leave the capital.Prime Minister Ali Zeidan has urged the locals to exercise self-restraint.“I urge that no forces enter Tripoli,” he said. “It would have catastrophic consequences.”Libyans have struggled to restore law and order to their country since the death of longstanding strongman Muammar Gaddafi two years ago.The transitional government and its security forces have also struggled to contain the armed militias that helped overthrow Gaddafi, but which held onto their weapons after the 2011 uprising.last_img

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