By Michel Cousins.
Tripoli, 19 September:
Fierce clashes broke out today in the town of Brak between government troops, said to be mostly . . .[restrict]from Misrata, and locals. At least eight members of the Supreme Security Committee are reported to have been killed as have several townspeople.
The town is some 800 kilometres south of Tripoli.
The clashes followed the killing of a local girl. SSC members were accused of being responsible for her death. It is reported that she was shot when they raided the family home in search of her brother, wanted in connection with an crime.
However, according to a Brak resident who said she and the family had had to take shelter in the cellar after a mortar exploded close to their home this morning, the SSC forces were unpopular as it was. Tensions had been rising in recent days between them and locals, she said. While speaking on the phone, the sound of artillery fire could be heard in the background.
By late afternoon, the clashes had died down. “There is still smoke over the town”, the resident said, again on the phone to Tripoli from Brak. Sporadic shooting was nonetheless continuing, she added. [/restrict]