Libyan gunmen disrupt main water supply line to besieged Tripoli

Libya
File AFP

UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Gunmen cut a main water supply line into the besieged Libyan capital Tripoli, increasing the suffering of people at risk of weeks of fighting.

A group of gunmen stormed on Sunday one of the project’s stations, a network of pipelines to transport underground water from arid desert to all Libyan cities.

The gunmen forced the staff to close the lines at the station, 400 km south of Tripoli.

The forces of eastern Libya (the Libyan National Army) under the leadership of Khalifa Hafer launched an attack on Tripoli in early April, but fighters loyal to the government of Tripoli, backed by the United Nations, fought on the outskirts of southern Tripoli.

In previous attacks on the pipeline, one of Muammar Gaddafi’s few development projects, water scarcity was seen in homes in Tripoli, home to 2.5 million people in two days.

The Tripoli government has accused a group led by a man named Khalifa Lachish of responsibility. The group, which caused the interruption of water supply in 2017, was fighting in the ranks of the Hafar forces.

The Libyan National Army denied that and could not communicate with Ahnish.

Fighting around Tripoli has killed at least 510 people and forced 75,000 to flee their homes as thousands of migrants stranded in detention centers have been stranded and some areas in southern Tripoli have been completely destroyed.

The fighting has also resulted in the closure of schools, dispersal of families on both sides of the front line and power cuts.

Fighting around Tripoli is one of the biggest upsurges in the chaotic country since the 1991 ouster of Gaddafi, and fighting has increased divisions over Libya in the Gulf.

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