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356 dead in month-old battle for Libya's Benghazi

A member of the pro-government Libyan forces fires towards Islamist militiamen during clashes on November 2, 2014 in the al-Salmani neighbourhood of BenghaziAt least 356 people have been killed in fighting for Libya’s second city Benghazi since the launch of a government-backed offensive against Islamist militias a month ago, medical sources said Saturday. More than 200 of the dead have been soldiers — either members of the regular army or loyalists of controversial retired general Khalifa Haftar, the Red Crescent and hospital sources said. All of Libya’s three big cities — the capital Tripoli, third city Misrata and Benghazi — are largely under the control of Islamist-led militias. In Benghazi, one of them — Ansar al-Sharia — is blacklisted by Washington as a terror group for its alleged role in a deadly 2012 attack on the US consulate.

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