By Libya Herald staff.
Benghazi, 20 January 2015:
Fierce fighting has broken out in Garyounis, near Benghazi university, in what appears to be . . .[restrict]a major counterattack by Ansar Al-Sharia.
As a nearby resident told the Libya Herald this evening, while the sounds of artillery could be heard in the background: “Something is abnormal. We have not heard sounds like this for a long time”.
Only four days ago, an Army spokesman was telling this reporter that, with exception of the continuing fighting around Ansar strong points in Leithi and Sabri and the still-disputed main port, the rest of the city was secure.
Certainly the strong police and army presence in the city centre a week ago today, saw off the remote possibility of a response to the “intifada” called by the Islamist commander of the Libya Shield 1 Brigade, Wissam Bin Hamid.
The fighting around Garyounis began last night, continued the a low level and picked up this evening. Yesterday evening a jet was heard flying over the battle area and another passed over this evening. But on nether occasion did any bombs appear to be dropped.
The misery and anxiety of Benghazinos was increased by the power cut that knocked out electricity to virtually the whole city from midday until early this evening. GECOL blamed the outage on a loss of gas pressure to the 300MW Benghazi North power station. Despite Al Madar’s assurances that it is fixed, its phone system continues to be out for most of Benghazi.