Rival militias fired guns and rocket-propelled grenades at each other in Tripoli today and set fire to a former intelligence building in one of the worst breakdowns of security in the capital since Muammar Gaddafi's fall.
At least five people were wounded and a stray bullet entered a hospital in the heart of the city. Residents rushed to arm themselves, saying calls to police had gone unheeded. After more than 12 hours, the army moved in to restore order.
The violence underscored the challenge faced by Libya's new government in reining in militias that gained power a year ago during the conflict that ended Gaddafi's 42-year rule, and holding together a country riven by clan, regional and sectarian divisions.