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Suicide bombing targets military checkpoint in Benghazi

Source: Reuters - Sun, 22 Dec 2013 15:59 PM
Author: Reuters
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Officials in Libya are picking up the pieces from a deadly suicide bombing at a military checkpoint on the outskirts of Benghazi.

Mangled pieces of metal are all that remains from the bombing, which killed seven and wounded at least a dozen others.

An army officer said a Toyota truck drove up to the gate at midnight.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) BENGHAZI ARMY OFFICER, AYMEN AL-ABDLAY, SAYING:

"We are in the Barsis area at the gate precisely, a vehicle came at 12 o'clock at night, the vehicle was a white cruiser, at that moment they (security) told him (the driver) to pull over, when he stopped the vehicle loaded with explosives exploded. Seven of our people died and 15 were wounded and the situation is currently as you can see."

The blast destroyed nearby vehicles and left its mark on nearby walls.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Car bombs and assassinations of army and police officers are common in Benghazi where troops have clashed regularly with militants from the hardline Islamist group Ansar al-Sharia.

A suicide bombing would mark a shift in tactics to fit a pattern common in other Islamist struggles in the Middle East, but not in Libya either during or since the uprising that brought down Muammar Gaddafi.

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