Armed groups in Zawiya, a city in northwestern Libya, ceased fighting after clashes erupted overnight causing the death of four people, according to the Ambulance and Emergency Service.
The armed groups, both of which are reportedly affiliated with the Tripoli-based Government of National Unity, clashed at the city’s entrance and nearby residential areas.
Thirty families were evacuated from their homes through a safe passage established by rescue teams of the Ambulance and Emergency Service.
The Libya Red Crescent’s office in Zawiya confirmed today that the warring parties have reached an agreement to stop fighting after multiple appeals from health services, who pleaded for truce to help evacuate civilians stuck in areas of clashes.
The Red Crescent called on security authorities to cooperate in the evacuation operations. It also affirmed that civilians and medical staff must not be targeted.
Since Libya plunged into a security unrest in the aftermath of the 2011 civil war that toppled Muammar Gaddafi, Zawiya, much like other Libyan cities, regularly witnesses fighting between armed groups for power and influence, benefiting from the security crisis that gave rise to smuggling drugs, oil and human trafficking.
Earlier this month, armed groups clashed in the city with violence causing harm to civilians as three people were wounded. The violence also damaged the Zawiya refinery, Libya’s largest oil refinery with a capacity of up to 120,000 barrels per day.