Libya's EU envoy 'appeals to Mogherini'

Libya's EU envoy 'appeals to Mogherini'

Photo: AFP

Libya's ambassador to the European Union has asked the bloc's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to urge members of the United Nations Security Council to safeguard civilians in the deadly battle for Tripoli, the Libyan Observer reported on Thursday.

In a letter addressed to Mogherini, Hafez Kaddour said that forces loyal to eastern strongman Khalifa Haftar had fired numerous rockets at residential neighbourhoods in Tripoli as part of its two-week-long ground assault on the city which continues despite appeals for a truce, the daily said.

The foreign ministry of the UN-backed government in Tripoli has also warned the UN Security Council of the "deteriorating" humanitarian situation caused by Haftar's military offensive, Kaddour said.

At least 205 people have died and over 900 have been injured in the military escalation in Tripoli since Haftar on 4 April ordered his militia to seize the capital, the UN World Health Organization said on Thursday.

As many as 25,000 people have fled their homes in Tripoli over the past two weeks, including 4,500 in the previous 24 hours, the UN Organisation for Migration said on Wednesday.

Libya's UN-backed Fayez al-Sarraj said on Tuesday that the UN Security Council must hold Haftar to account for his forces' "savagery and barbarism".

Sarraj said the unity government was handing documentary evidence against Haftar to the International Criminal Court on Wednesday with a request to the tribunal to prosecute Haftar for war crimes and crimes against humanity.