42 killed in air strike on Libyan town: Reports

International | Written by : IANS| Updated: Mon, Aug 05, 2019, 11:37 PM

42 killed in air strike on Libyan town: Reports

Tripoli   : At least 42 people have died in an air strike on the Libyan town of Murzuq carried out by the forces of rebel General Khalifa Haftar, media reports say.

The airstrike reportedly hit a wedding ceremony in the southwestern Libya town, according to media reports. It was blamed on the eastern Libyan National Army (LNA) forces loyal to Gen. Haftar.

The LNA confirmed it targeted the town late on Sunday in Murzuq, but denied targeting civilians, the BBC reported on Monday.

Libya has been torn by conflict since the fall of long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

Fighting between the UN-backed government of National Accord (GNA) and Gen. Haftar's forces has claimed more than 1,000 lives since April, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

On Saturday, GNA said it had downed an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) of Gen. Haftar's forces.

Pro-Haftar media outlets said they were attacking Chadian mercenaries, which is how they refer to the Tebu ethnic group which opposes Gen. Haftar, the BBC reported.

His forces seized Murzuq earlier this year as part of an offensive to take control of the oil-producing south - but they later withdrew.