Libya Islamic militias declare control of Benghazi

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Libya Islamic militias declare control of Benghazi
In this photo provided by Egypt's state news agency MENA, speaker of the Libyan Parliament Ageila Saleh Eissa, left, meets Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. A delegation of Libyan officials are visiting Egypt amid increasing fears among Libya's neighbors and Western countries that the North African nation is sliding deeper into turmoil, particularly after mysterious airstrikes against Islamist militias prompted allegations that outside powers were trying to swing the fight. (AP Photo/Fady Fares, MENA)
Libyan Foreign Minister Mohamed Abdelaziz, right, greets his Chadian counterpart Moussa Faki during the opening session of a gathering of foreign ministers of Libya's neighbors in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Aug. 25, 2014. Foreign ministers from Egypt Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Sudan, and Chad, as well as the Arab League Secretary General, met Monday as weeks of inter-militia fighting has wreaked havoc in Libya. It's the worst violence in Libya since the 2011 downfall and killing of dictator Moammar Gadhafi. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)
In this image made from AP video on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014, a MiG fighter jet flies over Benghazi, Libya. MiG fighter jets, reportedly under the control of renegade general, Khalifa Hifter, struck in retaliation the bases of Islamic militias in Benghazi on Friday, as a coalition of Islamic militias over the past week captured a number of army bases in Benghazi, driving out troops and police and seizing large weapon stores. (AP Photo/AP video)
A picture taken on August 26, 2014, shows the damaged interior of the main building at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital after fighters from the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition captured the airport from Zintan force, allies of rogue general Khalifa Haftar. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on August 26, 2014, shows the damaged exterior of the main building at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital after fighters from the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition captured the airport from Zintan force, allies of rogue general Khalifa Haftar. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on August 26, 2014, shows the damaged interior of the main building at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital after fighters from the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition captured the airport from Zintan force, allies of rogue general Khalifa Haftar. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on August 26, 2014, shows damaged airplanes on the tarmac at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital after fighters from the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition captured the airport from Zintan force, allies of rogue general Khalifa Haftar. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 25: (EDITORS NOTE: Image contains graphic content.)Rescue teams try to remove dead body of refugees in Libya on August 25, 2014. An overloaded boat carrying suspected illegal African immigrants sank and at least 200 passengers drowned, many of them missing. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 24: Militants of Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition make an appearance at the entrance of the International Tripoli Airport after seizing the control of the airport after a month-long battle in Tripoli, Libya on August 24, 2014. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 24: Militants of Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition make an appearance at the entrance of the International Tripoli Airport after seizing the control of the airport after a month-long battle in Tripoli, Libya on August 24, 2014. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Islamist fighters in the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition arrive at the entrance of Tripoli international airport on August 24, 2014, after capturing it from Zintan force, allies of rogue general Khalifa Haftar, following many days of clashes. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Smoke billows from buildings during clashes between Libyan security forces and armed Islamist groups in the eastern coastal city of Benghazi on August 23, 2014. Islamist fighters in the Fajr Libya (Libyan Dawn) coalition said they have captured Tripoli's battered international airport after many days of clashes with nationalist militiamen. AFP PHOTO / ABDULLAH DOMA (Photo credit should read ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP/Getty Images)
Spent bullet shells litter the ground as a member of the Islamist-linked militia of Misrata walks past following three days of battles in the area of Tripoli's International airport, on August 21, 2014. The Misrata militia has been battling nationalist fighters from Zintan for control of a bridge giving access to Tripoli international airport which has been closed since July 13, and which is currently in the hands of the militiamen from Zintan, who are held up southwest of Tripoli and who have been fending off a challenge from the fighters from Misrata, held up east of the capital. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Black smoke is seen in the area of Tripoli's international airport, on August 20, 2014. Regular thuds from rival militias' battles near Tripoli airport have become part of daily life for the Libyan capital's residents, busy coping with power cuts and petrol shortages. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 19: Libyans inspect a house damaged by an unknown air attack in Al-Andalus district of Tripoli, Libya on August 19, 2014. An unknown air attack was staged on Al-Andalus at last night. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Two men hold a weapon and ammunition during fightings between rival militias around Tripoli international airport, on August 17, 2014. The skirmishes have centred around Tripoli, where nationalists militiamen are battling pro-Islamist groups, and in second city Benghazi where a renegade army general is fighting Islamists. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
A man, wearing military fatigues, sits next to weapons and ammunition during fightings between rival militias around Tripoli international airport, on August 17, 2014. The skirmishes have centred around Tripoli, where nationalists militiamen are battling pro-Islamist groups, and in second city Benghazi where a renegade army general is fighting Islamists. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 15: Libyans wave national flags and chant slogans during a protest against the Libyan Parliament's decision to call on the UN and the Security Council to protect civilians and state institutions on August 15, 2014 in Martyrs' Square in the Libyan capital Tripoli. Libyan MPs voted on August 13, 2014 to call for foreign intervention to protect civilians amid clashes in the country. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - AUGUST 15: Libyans wave national flags and chant slogans during a protest against the Libyan Parliament's decision to call on the UN and the Security Council to protect civilians and state institutions on August 15, 2014 in Martyrs' Square in the Libyan capital Tripoli. Libyan MPs voted on August 13, 2014 to call for foreign intervention to protect civilians amid clashes in the country. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Libyans hold placards, one (C) reading in Arabic: 'Why are the innocent of Derna being shelled?', during a protest against the new anti-Islamist parliament on August 15, 2014 in Martyrs' Square in the Libyan capital Tripoli. A majority of Libyan MPs voted on August 13, 2014 to call for foreign intervention to protect civilians amid chaos in the North African country as rival militias engage in fierce clashes, a deputy said. The parliament, elected on June 25, met in Tobruk between Benghazi and the border with Egypt, because of the violence plaguing both of Libyas main cities. AFP PHOTO / MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
DERNA, LIBYA - AUGUST 12: Air strikes by the forces of General Khalifa Haftar's forces hit port city Derna, in eastern Libya, left several people seriously wounded on August 12, 2014. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Libyans stand outside a heavily damaged house at a former Libyan army camp known as Camp 27, in the capital Tripoli, on August 11, 2014 following reported clashes between rival militias. Since mid-July, Libya has seen clashes between rival militias in Tripoli and in the eastern city of Benghazi. Violence in those cities has killed more than 220 people, wounded around 1,000, and prompted an exodus of foreign nationals from the oil-rich North African nation. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
BENGHAZI, LIBYA - AUGUST 8: Thousands people stage a protest against the newly elected parliament on August 8, 2014 in Benghazi, Libya. The parliament, elected on June 25, is to take over from the interim General National Congress (GNC) chosen in the wake of the 2011 NATO-backed revolution that ousted Moamer Kadhafi. (Photo by Mohammed Elshaiky/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
BENGHAZI, LIBYA - AUGUST 8: A libyan holds national flag during the protest against the newly elected parliament on August 8, 2014 in Benghazi, Libya. The parliament, elected on June 25, is to take over from the interim General National Congress (GNC) chosen in the wake of the 2011 NATO-backed revolution that ousted Moamer Kadhafi. (Photo by Mohammed Elshaiky/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
A Libyan soldier inspects shrapnel marks on a wall on July 22, 2014 after a double suicide bombing on a military base in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi killed at least four soldiers, military and medical officials said. The two attackers, who detonated car bombs, targeted a Libyan army special forces barracks in the Bouatni area of Benghazi, an army official told AFP. AFP PHOTO/Abdullah DOMA (Photo credit should read ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP/Getty Images)
Two Libyan soldiers inspect shrapnel marks on a wall on July 22, 2014 after a double suicide bombing on a military base in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi killed at least four soldiers, military and medical officials said. The two attackers, who detonated car bombs, targeted a Libyan army special forces barracks in the Bouatni area of Benghazi, an army official told AFP. AFP PHOTO/Abdullah DOMA (Photo credit should read ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP/Getty Images)
Elite Libyan unit's commander Colonel Wanis Abu Khamada gestures as he delivers a press statement following the suicide bombing on a military base in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi on July 22, 2014. The blast which killed at least four soldiers happened after two attackers, detonated car bombs, targeting a Libyan army special forces barracks in the Bouatni area of Benghazi, an army official told AFP. AFP PHOTO/ABDULLAH DOMA (Photo credit should read ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on July 16, 2014, shows the remains of a burnt airplane at the Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day, in attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility, a Libyan security official said. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Wreckage from a Libyan paramilitary fighter lies on the ground after it crashed in the eastern city of Benghazi during fighting with Islamist groups on July 29, 2014. General Sagr al-Jerouchi, Libyan chief of air operations for dissident ex-general Khalifa Haftar, said it was not immediately clear if the plane had been hit by gunfire or suffered a malfunction before crashing and exploding. AFP PHOTO/STR (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Smoke billows during clashes between security forces and armed groups near a Libyan army special forces barracks, on July 23, 2014, in the eastern city of Benghazi. Elsewhere in the country, rival militias have been engaged in a bloody battle for Libya's main international airport in Tripoli for 11 days that has halted all flights and caused extensive damage to airport infrastructure. AFP PHOTO / ABDULLAH DOMA (Photo credit should read ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 25: A group of Libyan people stage demonstration to protest the clashes happening in Libya, and demand the end of these clashes for peace in Tripoli, Libya on July 25, 2014. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 25: A group of Libyan people stage demonstration to protest the clashes happening in Libya, and demand the end of these clashes for peace in Tripoli, Libya on July 25, 2014. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Libyans condemn and urge for an end of war during a protest at the Algeria Square July 26, 2014 in Tripoli, Libya. The Libyan government warned on Friday of the possibility of a break-up of the country if clashes between rival militias for control of Tripoli airport went on. Calling for an end to 13 days of conflict around the airport, the interim government warned of 'the collapse of the country' and 'the destruction which could result from ... endless war'. AFP PHOTO / Mahmud TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Libyans condemn and urge for an end of war during a protest at the Algeria Square July 26, 2014 in Tripoli, Libya. The Libyan government warned on Friday of the possibility of a break-up of the country if clashes between rival militias for control of Tripoli airport went on. Calling for an end to 13 days of conflict around the airport, the interim government warned of 'the collapse of the country' and 'the destruction which could result from ... endless war'. AFP PHOTO / Mahmud TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Smoke billows from an area near Tripoli's international airport as fighting between rival factions around the capital's airport continues on July 24, 2014. The airport has been closed since July 13 because of clashes which have left at least 47 dead and 120 wounded, according to the health ministry on July 23. AFP PHOTO / MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 22: Passengers queues to drop their bags off as they check-in for their flights at the Mitiga International Airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 22, 2014. Following the clashes, Mitiga Airport opens for domestic and foreign flights. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 21: A burnt airplane lies at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014, after militias stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by opponents. The fighting halted all flights and caused damage to planes and airport infrastructure. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 21: A burnt airplane lies at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014, after militias stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by opponents. The fighting halted all flights and caused damage to planes and airport infrastructure. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 21: A burnt airplane lies at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014, after militias stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by opponents. The fighting halted all flights and caused damage to planes and airport infrastructure. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 21: Destroyed wall is seen following the clashes at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014, after militias stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by opponents. The fighting halted all flights and caused damage to planes and airport infrastructure. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 21: Libyan officials examine the airport area following clashes at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014, after militias stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by opponents. The fighting halted all flights and caused damage to planes and airport infrastructure. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
Libyan Ministry of Transportation Abdul Qader Mohammed Ahmed gestures as he inspects the destruction at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 21, 2014 after Islamist-led militiamen stepped up their assault on the country's main airport, which is controlled by rival fighters. The fighting, which erupted on July 13 and shut the international airport, also injured 120 people, according to figures for the week until July 19. The fighting has halted all flights and caused extensive damage to planes and airport infrastructure, with aviation officials saying Tripoli airport could be closed for months. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken at sea shows the transfer of immigrants from the tanker 'Torm Lotte' to tug boat 'Grifone' in the middle of Messina's marine channel following a rescue operation on July 20, 2014. There has been a sharp rise in migrant landings in recent weeks because of the calm summer weather and growing lawlessness in Libya, with hundreds of migrants now being intercepted by Italian authorities every day. Around 80,000 migrants are now believed to have landed in Italy so far this year -- higher than the previous record of some 60,000 arriving in 2011 at the height of the turmoil triggered by the Arab Spring revolutions. AFP PHOTO/GIOVANNI ISOLINO (Photo credit should read GIOVANNI ISOLINO/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken at sea shows the transfer of immigrants from the tanker 'Torm Lotte' to tug boat 'Grifone' in the middle of Messina's marine channel following a rescue operation on July 20, 2014. There has been a sharp rise in migrant landings in recent weeks because of the calm summer weather and growing lawlessness in Libya, with hundreds of migrants now being intercepted by Italian authorities every day. Around 80,000 migrants are now believed to have landed in Italy so far this year -- higher than the previous record of some 60,000 arriving in 2011 at the height of the turmoil triggered by the Arab Spring revolutions. AFP PHOTO/GIOVANNI ISOLINO (Photo credit should read GIOVANNI ISOLINO/AFP/Getty Images)
Police and forensic workers prepare to remove the bodies of a migrant boat at the Valletta port in Malta on July 20, 2014 a day after a rescue operation at sea. Italian and Maltese rescuers found 18 bodies on an overcrowded migrant boat yesterday, with Italian officials blaming toxic fumes from the engine and the Maltese military saying there could have been a stampede.Three asylum-seekers were evacuated by Italian coastguards and rushed to hospital. One of them died on the way and two others were in a serious condition, officials said. The boat is estimated to have had 400 people on board and was first spotted by a Danish ship south of the Italian island of Lampedusa in waters between Libya and Malta. AFP PHOTO / MATTHEW MIRABELLI (Photo credit should read Matthew Mirabelli/AFP/Getty Images)
Immigrants part of a group of more than 2.000 people disembarked from Italian military ship 'Etna' on July 19, 2014 in the port of Salerno, southern Italy, following Mare Nostrum rescue operations at sea. There has been a sharp rise in migrant landings in recent weeks because of the calm summer weather and growing lawlessness in Libya, with hundreds of migrants now being intercepted by Italian authorities every day. Most of them come from Eritrea, Somalia and Syria but there are also asylum-seekers arriving from Afghanistan, Pakistan and other parts of Asia as well as sub-Saharan Africa. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
Immigrants part of a group of more than 2.000 people disembark from Italian military ship 'Etna' on July 19, 2014 in the port of Salerno, southern Italy, following Mare Nostrum rescue operations at sea. There has been a sharp rise in migrant landings in recent weeks because of the calm summer weather and growing lawlessness in Libya, with hundreds of migrants now being intercepted by Italian authorities every day. Most of them come from Eritrea, Somalia and Syria but there are also asylum-seekers arriving from Afghanistan, Pakistan and other parts of Asia as well as sub-Saharan Africa. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: A damaged airplane is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: A damaged airplane is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: A damaged car is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: An armored vehicle is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: A view from Tripoli international airport after the clashes between military forces and armed opponent groups is seen in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: Unexploded mortar shell sticking out of the ground is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 16: Unexploded mortar shell sticking out of the ground is seen at the Tripoli international airport in Tripoli, Libya on July 16, 2014. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day and attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
TRIPOLI, LIBYA - JULY 14: A view of burnt vehicles in the compound of Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 followed the clashes between Islamist militias and the rival Zintan group that controls Libya's international airport in Tripoli. (Photo by Hazem Turkia/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
A picture taken on July 16, 2014, shows the remains of burnt cars at the Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital. Tripoli international airport came under rocket fire Wednesday for a fourth straight day, in attacks aimed at ousting anti-Islamist fighters who control the facility, a Libyan security official said. Islamist militias have since Sunday unleashed dozens of rockets at Tripoli airport, damaging around a dozen planes and closing down Libya's main air link with the outside world. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD TURKIA (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)
FILE - In this Sept. 14, 2012 file photo, Libyan military guards check one of the U.S. consulate's burned buildings after a deadly attack on Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012 in Benghazi. Newly revealed testimony from top military commanders involved in the U.S. response to the Benghazi attacks suggests that the perpetrators of a second, dawn attack on a CIA complex probably were different from those who penetrated the U.S. diplomatic mission the evening before and set it ablaze, killing Ambassador Chris Stevens and another American. The second attack, which killed two security contractors, showed clear military training, retired Gen. Carter Ham told Congress in closed-door testimony. (AP Photo/Mohammad Hannon, File)
The coffins with bodies of would-be refugees are disembarked in Augusta, Sicily, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. Another 24 bodies were recovered Tuesday from an overturned fishing boat off Italy's southern coast as would-be refugees fleeing increasing instability in Libya saw their deadliest few days this year with more than 300 drowned. The U.N. refugee agency said the worst incident occurred Friday near Garibouli, east of Tripoli. That boat was reportedly carrying at least 270 people when it overturned and sank. Only 19 people survived, according to Melissa Fleming, spokeswoman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva. On Tuesday, the Italian navy said two of its patrol boats recovered 24 corpses from a capsized smuggler's boat Sunday night. Their remains, as well as 364 survivors, were headed toward Augusta. (AP Photo/str)
The coffins with bodies of would-be refugees are disembarked in Augusta, Sicily, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. Another 24 bodies were recovered Tuesday from an overturned fishing boat off Italy's southern coast as would-be refugees fleeing increasing instability in Libya saw their deadliest few days this year with more than 300 drowned. The U.N. refugee agency said the worst incident occurred Friday near Garibouli, east of Tripoli. That boat was reportedly carrying at least 270 people when it overturned and sank. Only 19 people survived, according to Melissa Fleming, spokeswoman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva. On Tuesday, the Italian navy said two of its patrol boats recovered 24 corpses from a capsized smuggler's boat Sunday night. Their remains, as well as 364 survivors, were headed toward Augusta. (AP Photo/str)
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By OMAR ALMOSMARI and MAGGIE MICHAEL

BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) - Islamic hard-line militias claimed to have taken control of Libya's second largest city, Benghazi, after defeating army units, taking over military barracks and seizing tanks, rockets and hundreds of boxes of ammunition, as fighting in the capital prompted a wave of evacuations Thursday by foreign nationals, diplomats and Libyans.

The extent of the militias' control over Benghazi was not clear. On Thursday, the city's streets were nearly empty, with residents staying indoors and shops closed - but with also no sign of checkpoints by either militiamen or security forces. The main police headquarters was still smoldering after it was hit by militia shelling a day earlier, and smoke rose from the barracks of the Special Forces, once the strongest security body in the city until it was overrun by militiamen.

The militia victories in the city are part of a powerful backlash by Islamist forces in Libya after setbacks earlier this year. In Tripoli, Islamist-led militias have been battling for weeks with rival fighters in an attempt to seize the international airport in the capital's worst fighting since the 2011 civil war that ousted Moammar Gadhafi.

Spain announced it was pulling its ambassador and most embassy staff out of Tripoli, a step already taken by the United States. China has chartered a Greek vessel to evacuate hundreds of Chinese citizens, and the Philippines is working to get out some 13,00 Filipino workers inside Libya.

By noon on Thursday, more than 10,000 Libyans fled by land across the border into neighboring Tunisia over the previous 12 hours, Tunisia's state news agency reported. They joined thousands of other Libyans who have already streamed into Tunisia in recent days.

In the capital, residents said there were shortages of fuel and gasoline, and food prices had leaped. "All of this is caused by political parties that are fighting for power, for government positions and money," said Abdelfattah Alghanai, a man shopping for vegetables.

The militiamen's sweep through Benghazi was a heavy reversal for Gen. Khalifa Hifter, a renegade general who for months had led army units and other fighters in a self-declared campaign aimed at stamping out armed Islamic militant groups.

After forces loyal to him lost their bases inside Benghazi the past days, Hifter's loyalists now appeared to only hold the airport on the city's edges.

The armed groups that overran Benghazi belong to a newly-formed umbrella group called Shura Council of Benghazi Revolutionaries, made up of multiple armed factions led by Islamic extremist commanders. Among the factions is Ansar al-Shariah, the group accused by the United States of leading a Sept. 11, 2012 attack on a diplomatic facility in the city that killed the ambassador and three other Americans.

"We are the only force on the ground in Benghazi," a commander of one of the coalition's factions told The Associated Press on Thursday. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the press. He said the coalition's fighters had driven all army forces and fighters loyal to Hifter out the city.

In a video put out by Thursday by Ansar al-Shariah, its commander Mohammed al-Zahawi congratulates his followers on "this victory and conquest." He was shown standing in front of a tank inside the base of the Special Forces. Another militia commander, Wissam bin Hamid, was also shown in the camp in the video, proclaiming in front of his masked fighters, "We will not stop until we establish the rule of God." The video conformed with the AP's reporting from the city.

The surge is a blow to efforts to end the power of militias in Benghazi. After the fall of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi in the 2011 civil war, militias emerged as the strongest power in the city, setting up barracks and bases packed with weaponry and taking over security powers. All of them were on government payroll since central authorities depended on them to maintain order. But after the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission, Benghazi protesters chased out Ansar al-Shariah and other militias in demonstrations that saw bloody attacks by militiamen..

The Special Forces, one of the few elite government forces, deployed in the city. For months, it has been clashing with Islamic militias accused in an increasing wave of unrest, bombings and assassinations.

Earlier this year, Hifter announced his own campaign to crush extremists, calling it the "Dignity Operation." Multiple army units and some militias declared they were joining him in the campaign, and his forces attacked Islamic militia positions around Benghazi.

In retaliation, extremist-led militias formed the Shura Council in June, vowing to "cleanse the city" of Hifter and his allies for the sake of establishment of an Islamic rule. The group was formed after U.S. special forces snatched a top hard-line commander, Ahmed Abu-Khatala, accused of involvement in the attack on the Americans.

Since then, the group has been making advances in fighting with army units and Hifter's forces, first capturing the city's seaport and one of the main hospitals. On July 14, the coalition said it took over a Benghazi army barrack that is one of the biggest in eastern Libya, called Barracks 319. Over the past week, more than five other barracks fell under their control, including the Special Forces camp.

"We will not stop until we uproot the latest person of the 'No-Dignity' and topple down their walls," the coalition said in a statement Monday, deriding the name of Hifter's campaign.

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