By Libya Herald Reporters.
Tripoli, 22 November 2013:
Derna is tense this evening after the murder last night of a prominent local official . . .[restrict]as he left a mosque. After his funeral today at the town’s Al-Sahaba mosque, there were a large demonstrations protesting the presence of militias and demanding that the police and army take back control of the city.
There was anger too over a bomb explosion at around 4.30 am today outside the Oum El-Mominee girl’s school which also houses the local 60-Committee election office. It is not known of the elections or the school was the target.
Fawzi Al-Zuwki, the secretary of Derna’s Shura Council (council of elders), was gunned down as he left Al-Sahaba mosque the last night and later died at Al-Hareesh hospital. He had recently given an interview in which he condemned the deteriorating security in the city.
For their part radicals have claimed maintained that some decisions made by the Shura Council were un-Islamic.
Zuwki’s murder is the latest in a growing list of terrorist assassinations and bombings in Derna.
The demonstration was peaceful and continued until sundown. There was no attempt to enter any of the militia bases in the town. One person taking part, told the Libya Herald that when the crowd passed militia positions, they deliberately ignored them. Reports that the vehicle of one Islamist commander was attacked have not been confirmed.
Two nights ago, at around 11 pm, members of the militia calling itself the Army of the Islamic State of Libya, led by 28-year-old Yousef Bin Tahir, set up road blocks at a central roundabout and at entry points into Derna.
This evening there were reports that power had been cut in several parts of the city. Two days ago, a parcel bomb severely damaged the thermal power plant five kilometres to the west of the town, injuring five volunteer guards. The blast happened at 6 am and it was not until 14 hours later that the damage was repaired. Thereafter, power engineers went on strike briefly in protest at the absence of state security in Derna and the presence of militias.
With contributions from Ashraf Abdul Wahab, Seraj Essul,Khaled Jebril and Ahmed Elumami.
The Libya Herald apologises for earlier using an old picture of demonstrations in Derna provided by a reporter. [/restrict]