Tripoli/Rome — Fighting between eastern Libyan forces and Tripoli government troops killed 56 people and forced 6,000 people to flee their homes in the capital in the last week, the UN said on Thursday, as France and Italy wrangled over how to respond to the renewed conflict. After sweeping up from the south, the Libyan National Army (LNA) forces of Khalifa Haftar have been blocked in the southern suburbs of Tripoli about 11km from the centre. Overnight, a Reuters reporter in central Tripoli heard gunfire and explosions as the LNA faced off with the forces of Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj’s government around the former international airport and the Ain Zara district. Haftar’s push for Tripoli is the latest in a cycle of violence and chaos in Libya since the 2011 overthrow of former strongman Muammar Gaddafi. In Rome, Libya’s former colonial ruler Italy warned France, which has close ties to Haftar, to refrain from supporting any faction after diplomats said Paris blocked an EU stat...

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