New clashes erupted on Tuesday between rival factions fighting for control of Libya’s biggest oil ports Es Sider and Ras Lanuf, killing at least 10 people, the two sides said.
The fighting came a day after the United Nations said it was seeking a ceasefire to pave the way for a new round of peace talks between factions operating two opposing governments, nearly four years after Muammar Gaddafi’s overthrow.
Libya’s internationally-recognised government under Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni and the elected House of Representatives have been based in the east since a group called Libya Dawn seized Tripoli last summer, set up its own administration and reinstated the old parliament.
Troops loyal to the Tripoli government launched an offensive in December to try to take the eastern Es Sider and Ras Lanuf oil ports, which have had to shut down operations. Both sides had declared partial ceasefires last month, which had largely held, to give a U.N.-sponsored dialogue a chance.