Flights resumed and shops reopened in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Sunday after clashes between supporters of rival governments left at least 32 people dead and raised fears of another major conflict. The fighting came after months of rising tensions between supporters of Abdulhamid Dbeibah and Fathi Bashagha, whose rival administrations are vying for control of the country.
Dbeibah’s administration, installed in the capital as part of a UN-led peace process last year, has so far prevented Bashagha from taking office there, arguing that the next administration should be the product of elections. Bashagha was appointed by the Libyan parliament, based in the east of the country, earlier this year. He is backed by powerful military leader Khalifa Haftar, whose attempt in 2019 to seize the capital by force turned into a year-long civil war. Some armed groups considered neutral in the latest crisis backed Dbeibah this weekend to repel Bashagha’s second attempt to enter the capital. The two sides exchanged blames on Saturday, while world powers appealed for calm.