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Minister in Libyan Parliament Announces Resignation

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Khaled Najm,the Minister of Media for the Tobruk-based parliament, recently announced his resignation as a result of Benghazi’s weakened security.

Najm’s announcement came after a string of bomb attacks hit Benghazi, including a bomb that damaged a school on Monday which resulted in the death of three people, two of them children, and injured 26 others.

“In protest against the bombings that have targeted civilians in Benghazi, and against the difficult circumstances that hinder our ability to provide security, I have decided to resign,” read a statement Najm posted on Facebook.

“I believe I can be of greater assistance if I work in an unofficial capacity,” he added in a follow up interview.

The escalating violence in Benghazi has been going on for two years and is mainly attributed to ongoing clashes between renegade General Khalifa Haftar and local brigades who oppose him. Both forces are vying for control of eastern Libya.

Neither of the two armed groups have claimed responsibility for the car bomb attack on Monday. A number of car bomb attacks were orchestrated by the Benghazi Revolutionaries Shura Council (BRSC), one of Haftar’s biggest opponents, in the last few weeks in Benghazi targeting Haftar’s forces.

Fighting between the two sides has been concentrated in the Ganfouda district, a suburb in Benghazi, where the BRSC originate from. Ganfouda and a few other areas in Benghazi have been put under siege by Haftar’s forces, who are also referred to as the Libyan National Army (LNA), for opposing Haftar.

Last week, Haftar’s forces were able to push their opponents out of Guwarsha, and afterwards they fought their way into Ganfouda.

The military blockade of Ganfouda, which began in July 2014, has put the safety of many families at risk.

A UN statement released on Tuesday expressed its grave concerns regarding the humanitarian crisis in Ganfouda neighbourhood. The statement called on all armed forces in the area to end the hostility directed to civilians in Ganfouda.

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