By Saber Ayyub.
Tripoli 19 December 2015:
A bomb exploded at the military intelligence headquarters in Sabratha early this morning injuring two security . . .[restrict]guards and causing extensive damage to the building. Some vehicles parks outside were also damaged. In response to the the attack, the mayor and the municipal council say they plan to declare a state of emergency.
According to the Mayor Hussein Dawadi, a explosive device was thrown at the building from a passing vehicle around 2am this morning. The building, officially the local headquarters of military intelligence, was little used, he said, although some military officials still went there during the day.
Local reports, however, said the explosive device had been left in a bag outside the building.
No one so far has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Dawadi has said that there were now plans for a state of emergency following the attack and that a military operations group was also to be formed to keep control of situation in town, 80 kilometres west of Tripoli.
He also added that there was to be an investigation and headcount of foreigners in the area, so that the council knew who they were. Most are thought to be Tunisians.
Both Ansar Al-Sharia and the so-called Islamic State (IS) are widely reported as having training facilities near the town, although municipal officials have regularly denied this. Just over a week ago, however, Hawadi, himself an Islamist, indicated that there might be IS supporters in the town but that none of them were foreign and suggested they were not dangerous. He was speaking just after military convoy of some 30 vehicles waving the black IS flag took to the streets of the town following an incident in which two men said to be linked to militants were arrested in the neighbouring town of Sorman. [/restrict]