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Militia groups ordered to leave Tripoli within 72 hours

Nov. 18, 2013 at 10:50 AM

TRIPOLI, Libya, Nov. 18 (UPI) -- Militia groups from the Libyan city of Misurata have been ordered to leave Tripoli after protesters died in a clash with gunmen, officials say.

Militia members are blamed for killing 43 people as protesters attempted to force them from their headquarters, the BBC reported Monday.

The Misurata local council and its council of elders ordered said in a joint statement Sunday every militia group from the city must leave Tripoli within 72 hours.

Tripoli residents have begun a three-day strike in protest of the shootings by militia gunmen on Friday and Saturday. Most shops and schools are closed. Local residents and armed groups have set up roadblocks.

The militia groups, which helped topple former leader Moammar Gadhafi in 2011, have refused to disarm.

Militias have been blamed for the kidnapping Sunday of the county's deputy intelligence chief, Mustafa Nuh, as he arrived at the Tripoli airport. He has since been released.

Prime Minister Ali Zeidan was abducted by gunmen in October, but was released several hours later.

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