Violent clashes broke out at dawn on Saturday between armed groups in the city of Al-Zawiya, west of the Libyan capital, Tripoli, which led to the suspension of studies and caused terror among the residents.

Local sources said that clashes broke out between what is known as the “First Support Force,” led by Mohammed Bahroun, and the Stabilization Support Apparatus in Al-Zawiya, led by Hassan Bouzriba, brother of the Minister of Interior in the parallel government designated by the House of Representatives. 

The sources confirmed that the reason for the clashes was the arrest by Stabilization Support Apparatus of members of the First Support Force.

Explosions, gunfire, and hand grenades were widely heard, amid reports of civilian casualties as a result of random shells falling on residential neighborhoods, while attempts continued to end this conflict.

The Red Crescent announced helping evacuating some families trapped in the ongoing clashes in the city. It thanked all the volunteers and everyone who tried to provide assistance to the Red Crescent, stressing that it would continue to perform its work in the city.

Al-Zawiya University Students Union announced the suspension of studies, on Saturday, due to tensions and clashes near the university.

These clashes came hours after protests had taken place in front of the city’s Security Directorate, to protest the deteriorating security situation and to denounce the growing number of murders, the weakness of the official security services, and the absence of any role for the government while outlaw armed militias and have controlled all facilities.

The security units in Al-Zawiya found five bodies, including a woman, with signs of gunfire inside a car near the Harsha Post Office building. The causes of the incident and those involved in it have not yet become clear, according to local sources.

The sources said that one of the bodies was found handcuffed. The bodies were transferred to Al-Zawiya Educational Hospital, to recognize their identities. The crime is not the first of its kind in Al-Zawiya, as the city witnesses killings, murders, and armed clashes between armed groups from time to time.