Renewed conflict has “spread geographically” and “exacted a heavy toll on civilians and those fighting”, said UN Special Representative for Libya, Ghassan Salamé, revealing that more than 100 civilians have been killed, over 300 injured and 120,000 displaced. 

Acknowledging that there are “no confirmed figures” for fighters who have died, he informed the Council that “anecdotally the figure appears to be in the low thousands” as another generation of young Libyans “are spilling their blood on the battlefield, when their skills could better be used to rebuild their country”.

SRSG: The violence in #Libya is exacerbated by the supply of additional arms, ammunition & war materiel into the country. Violations of the arms embargo have been both routine & often blatant by both of the main parties to the conflict and their respective sponsor Member States. pic.twitter.com/otCfGlG6ps

— UNSMIL (@UNSMILibya) September 4, 2019

Drawing attention to airport attacks, he noted that “disaster” was narrowly averted last Sunday when a plane full of returning pilgrims was “miraculously not hit” by a series of shells fired at Mitiga airport. Seven people were, however, injured. 

Mr. Salamé, who also heads the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) asked for the Council’s “strong support” in condemning indiscriminate shelling, “which threatens the lives of substantial numbers of civilians”.

Benghazi fallout

The Special Representative expressed his gratitude for the Council’s 10 August emergency session, which took place after UN staffers Clive Peck, Hussein El-Hadar, and Seniloli Tabuatausole’s lives were cut by a “cowardly attack” in Benghazi. 
He memorialized Mr. Peck, or “Tabs, as he was known”, as somebody who travelled the world as a UN security officer, “enabling the vital work of peace making and delivery of life-saving humanitarian assistance” and pointed out that “Hussein had been with the Mission for nearly six years and was due to be married this month”.

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