Libya: Death toll in Benghazi rises to 70

Associated Press

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Libya's Health Ministry says the death toll from weekend fighting in the eastern city of Benghazi between troops loyal to a rogue general and Islamist militias has risen to 70.

The ministry said on Sunday that 141 people were also injured in the fighting.

Libya's weak central government describes the offensive, which began Friday by Gen. Khalifa Hifter, and included air support, as tantamount to a coup.

The violence showed how precarious government control remains three years after the 2011 civil war that toppled longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

Libya's military banned flights Saturday over Benghazi and said in a statement that it would target any military aircraft flying over the city, where the uprising against Gadhafi began.

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