Tripoli, 11 September 2013:
A massive car bomb exploded outside the Benghazi branch of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs this morning, causing major structural damage to the building.
Two security guards stationed outside the nearby Central Bank of Libya (CBL) suffered minor injuries in the blast, which happened in the early hours of the morning.
“It was a massive explosion which caused a lot of damage to the two buildings,” spokesman for Benghazi’s Joint Security Room Abdullah Zaidi told the Libya Herald. Windows of nearby buildings, including those of CBL shattered in the blast.
The Benghazi Joint Security Forces were now trying to check video footage from CBL cameras, Zaidi said. He added that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was not fitted with cameras.
The explosion has fallen on the 12th anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks in the US, which last year saw US ambassador to Libya Chris Stephens killed. It is not known if the date is significant to today’s incident. However, a group calling itself the Islamic Emirate of Libya apparently posted a notice on its facebook page threatening attacks on various institutions across the country.
Today in Egypt there was a car bomb attack on the Sinai intelligence forces that left three soldiers dead and some 20 people with injuries. This suggests that militants have been trying to make a bloody statement on the anniversary. [/restrict]