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Security: bomb strikes Benghazi reception hall

Published: Updated:

A bomb exploded early Monday outside a reception hall in the restive eastern Libyan city of Benghazi, damaging the building without wounding anyone, security officials said.

“Unknown assailants on Monday morning threw an explosive device at a building housing a reception hall,” security forces spokesman Colonel Abdallah al-Zaidi said.

Zaidi said the homemade bomb contained some 12 kilograms (26 pounds) of TNT.

Two days earlier a bomb had exploded in the car of an electoral official in the same neighborhood in Benghazi, damaging five cars but causing no casualties.

That explosion took place in the parking lot of a school that was being used as a center for the committee organizing municipal elections, for which no date has yet been set.

Benghazi, the cradle of the 2011 revolution that toppled longtime ruler Muammar Qaddafi, now sees near-daily attacks and bombings, mainly targeting Libya’s fledgling security forces and Western missions.

The government has called on the rebel brigades that overthrew Qaddafi to lay down their arms or join the security forces, but several militias have ignored its pleas and carved out their own fiefdoms across the vast, mostly-desert country.