Libyan ammunitions depot explodes, 30 killed

GARABULLI , Libya, June 22 (UPI) — Explosions at a Garabulli, Libya, ammunition depot killed 30 people and injured dozens more, officials said.

The blasts in the northwestern coastal town occurred in an arms depot abandoned by an armed militia group after it left the city following clashes with local residents. A resident of Garabulli, about 30 miles from the city of Tripoli, said the disputes centered on a militia member who refused to pay for items purchased at a local store, the Iranian news network Press TV reported Tuesday.

An explosion was heard Tuesday afternoon; another came about seven minutes later as people aided the injured.

The cause of the explosions remains unknown.

Libya has two governments and an assortment of militia groups, some loyal to the Islamic State. A unity government, headquartered in the remote eastern city of Tobruk and called the Government of National Accord, has the support of the United Nations; another, in Tripoli, has the support of most of the militias.

The army of the U.N.-supported government said 18 of its troops were killed in battles with Islamic State fighters in Sirte, a port city near Tripoli. The army reported that much of the city has been recaptured, and it is preparing for a final assault. Sirte has been in IS hands since February 2015 and its recapture would enhance the power of the unity government in Libya.

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