CHINA TOPIX

Updated 8:44 AM EDT, Wed, Aug 18, 2021

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South Korean Embassy Shooting Kills Two In Libya

Two people were killed while another was injured after gunmen opened fire at the South Korean Embassy in Tripoli, Libya on Sunday.

Embassy officials said the gunmen fired some 40 machine-gun rounds from a passing car targeting a security post.   A guard and a civilian were killed, while another guard sustained injuries. The South Korean Foreign Ministry said the embassy had no employees at the time of the incident and no South Korean personnel were hurt in the attack.

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However, three South Korean nationals - two were diplomats - were staying at the official residence located inside the compound. Officials assured they were unhurt. 

Authorities have also heightened security around the embassy.

A group, which has identified itself as the Islamic State Tripoli Chapter, claimed responsibility for the attack hours after the shooting. 

The embassy had been closed for several months as tensions in Libya worsen due to conflict between rival political forces. 

Militant groups, which have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State, have also carried out attacks against foreigners and embassies. 

On Monday, a bomb exploded, this time outside the Moroccan embassy in Tripoli.  There were no reports of injuries as the embassy had been non-operational for some time.  However, some cars were damaged by the explosion.

Civil war had begun in Libya since the removal of its former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.   More than 3,000 people have been killed in the fighting, and human rights groups said a third of its population has already fled to Tunisia to escape violence.

On March 31, a Libyan general had promised to retake the city of Benghazi from militant groups within a month.

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