Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Libya truck bombing kills at least 60 policemen, wounds 200

08 January 2016, 09:56

Tripoli, Libya — A massive truck bomb exploded near a police base in the western Libyan town of Zliten on Thursday, killing at least 60 policemen and wounding around 200 others, officials said.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but a local Islamic State affiliate has been trying to gain a foothold in Zliten, spreading westward from its central stronghold in the city of Sirte along the North African country's coast.

The U.N. special envoy to Libya, Martin Kobler, denounced the attack and urged Libyans to "put their differences aside and unite to confront the scourge of terrorism." U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the attack as well as ongoing attacks by the Islamic State group on oil facilities near Sidra and called for a national unity government as "the best way for Libyans to confront terrorism in all its forms."

The bombing was yet another reminder for Libyans that "urgent progress is required" toward empowering a new unity government and rebuilding state bodies, Kobler said in a statement.

Hours after the blast, rescue crews at the scene had only managed to extract 60 bodies out of the wreckage, said a hospital spokesman, Moamar Kaddi. Libyan officials said they believed there might be dozens more dead.

The police base, where about 400 recruits were training, was used by Libya's border police, a Zliten security official said. Border police foiled numerous human smuggling attempts off the coast of Zliten last year. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

In Washington, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Thursday that the U.S. has not yet determined who is responsible for carrying out a "cowardly act of terrorism" and extended condolences to the victims and the families of those who were killed, and to the Libyan people. Earnest said the U.S. remains "deeply concerned" about Islamic State-inspired militants carrying out acts of violence in Libya.

Smugglers operating in Libya are notorious for responding with violence to any attempt to disrupt their lucrative operations, but there have been no reported incidents in which they used car bombs, suggesting that Islamic militant are more likely to have been behind Thursday's attack. Also, it was not immediately clear whether the attack was a suicide bombing, a hallmark method of Islamic militants.

In recent years, thousands of migrants seeking a better life in Europe sailed from Libya on rickety, overcrowded boats. Hundreds have drowned in those crossings.

Libya slid into chaos following the 2011 toppling and killing of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi. The oil-rich country is torn between an Islamist government based in the capital, Tripoli, and a rival, internationally recognized administration in the east. Meanwhile, a U.N.-supported unity government sits in neighboring Tunisia.

Residents in Libyan coastal cities have long expressed fears of the variety of smugglers and traffickers who run lucrative operations along the Mediterranean Sea. Authorities have echoed the same concerns, claiming they are unable to fully tackle these networks without international assistance.

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!

- AP


Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Leave ODM if you are unhappy, Rai...

Leave ODM if you are not happy, Raila Odinga tells Senator. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Former Assistant Minister joins J...

A former Assistant Minister has quit PNU and joined the Jubilee Party. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
DP Ruto intervenes as Kerio Valle...

DP William Ruto will visit Kerio Valley to try solve never-ending clashes between local residents. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
ODM MP chased down by angry Kibra...

Kibra MP Ken Okoth had a hard time in his constituency after angry youth pelted him with stones. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Prepare for DP Ruto fight in 2022...

An MP has warned that the Kalenjin Community will not stand back and watch as DP Ruto is duped ahead of the 2022 polls. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be careful who you deal with, DP ...

Watch out for your political future, DP William Ruto has been warned. Read more...