Libyan army clashes with militias near Tripoli as airstrikes bomb city’s only airport

Security officials from both sides of the Libyan conflict say army troops are battling militias west of the capital, Tripoli. Meanwhile, the Libyan army says it’s carrying out airstrikes on multiple targets.

Libyan army spokesman Ahmed al-Mesmari says airstrikes Saturday targeted Matiga base — Tripoli’s only functioning airport — and two other encampments used by forces loyal to the Tripoli government. An official from the Tripoli government says anti-aircraft defenses prevented damage to Matiga.

Rival governments in Libya are grappling for power as the United Nations holds talks to try to end the violence. The internationally-recognized elected government was driven out of Tripoli last year and has been relegated to the eastern city of Tobruk. A bloc of Islamist parties, backed by militias, set up its own government in Tripoli.

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