Interior Minister Bashagha Says Diplomatic Missions Can Return To Tripoli

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Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha of the Government of National Accord (GNA) announced on Thursday that foreign diplomatic missions could return to the capital, Tripoli.

In a statement on Twitter, Bashagha said that the General Administration for the Protection of Diplomatic Missions was fully prepared to provide security for Embassys, Consulates, and their staff.

The conflict between the GNA and the Libyan National Army has recently moved away from Tripoli, following the LNA’s defeat in western Libya. A possible return to hostilities is now expected around the city of Sirte, in central Libya.

Despite this, Tripoli has continued witnessing episodes of skirmishes and armed clashes between armed groups present in the capital.

Rival armed groups are reported to have clashed in the Janzour area of western Tripoli on the morning of Tuesday, July 7, leaving several civilians wounded as well as many civilian vehicles were destroyed.

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) has expressed concern over clashes that took place between criminal elements in Janzour, a civilian-populated neighborhood in Tripoli. According to UNSMIL, these clashes frightened local residents and resulted in a number of casualties.

“The Mission condemns such reckless actions, as they directly endanger civilians at a time when Tripoli is beginning to recover from a 15-month long siege,” UNSMIL said.

The clashes underscored the need for the GNA to move swiftly on effective and coordinated Security Sector Reform and Disarmament Demobilization and Reintegration efforts.