The deadly terrorist bombing in the Libyan city of of Misrata two weeks ago killed 65 Police recruits and left hundreds injured.
A suicide bomber drove a large truck through the gate of the police training college and exploded his bomb. At that time, around 400 young police recruits were gathered near the college gate, attending a graduation ceremony.
Libya’s east had been targeted by IS militants, and the militants launched attacks on major oil facilities that resulted in huge fires in Es-Sidra and Ras Lanuf.
US condemns the attack
In a press statement in Washington DC, US Department of State Spokesperson John Kirby expressed strong condemnation of the bombing in Zliten, Libya, as well as the attacks since January 4 on the oil terminals in Es-Sidra and Ras Lanuf.
“We extend our condolences to the families of those killed and injured.” – Mr. Kirby
Mr. Kirby acknowledged that violent extremists including ISIL-affiliated groups threaten all Libyans throughout the country.
He added that by carrying out attacks on oil fields, the militants are threatening resources that belong to the Libyan people that all Libyans must strive to protect for future generations.
Libyan Political Agreement Needs to Be Implemented
According to Mr. Kirby, the recent outbursts of militant attacks stress again the urgent need for Libya’s new leaders to formalize the Government of National Accord (GNA), as outlined in the Libyan Political Agreement.
“This is a vital step to address the country’s critical humanitarian, economic, and security challenges.” – Mr. Kirby
Mr. Kirby underscored that the United States stands ready to help the new Presidency Council and other Libyan leaders implement the Libyan Political Agreement.
“We are committed to providing the unified government full political backing and technical, economic, security and counter-terrorism assistance.” – Mr. Kirby
Libya has been engulfed by fighting since the pro-democracy movement opposed to the regime of Muammar al-Qadhafi emerged in February 2011 following similar protests in Tunisia, Egypt and other countries across North Africa and the Middle East.
Hundreds of people were killed in the fighting and hundreds of thousands of others were internally displaced or forced to flee to neighbouring countries.
The United States and France played a central role in marshalling the international response to the crisis in Libya.
Muammar Gaddafi was killed in his home town of Sirte on October 2011 when he was overrun by fighters seeking to complete the eight-month uprising.
Gaddafi’s demise marked the end of 42 years of his brutal regime ruled by fear, torture and executions. The US says Gaddafi’s mismanagement of the economy brought ruin to Libya and impoverished the Libyan people despite the huge oil and gas wealth.
Benghazi Questions Remain
Libya is a long way from being considered stable. On the anniversary of 9/11, in 2012, Christopher Stevens, The U.S. Ambassador and three other Americans were killed in Benghazi, in an organized attack on a poorly protected safe house acting as a consulate. Many questions remain, including why the consulate was so poorly protected, why the security contingent had recently been withdrawn by the Administration, and why, when the Administration saw the attack, and the Ambassador was still alive, assistance was withheld.