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Libya conflict: At least 28 dead in weapons store explosion

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At least 28 civilians have been killed and dozens injured in an explosion in the western Libyan town of Garabulli, thought to be at an ammunition store.

Locals said the explosion happened in a camp controlled by an armed militia from the city of Misrata, but the group had left after clashing with residents.

The explosion reportedly happened as residents entered the camp but it is not yet clear what triggered the blast.

Garabulli is about 50km (30 miles) east of Tripoli and 140km west of Misrata.

“The number of casualties is rising and we are working hard to transfer them to nearest hospitals,” Mohamed Assayed, a local official, said.

About 30 people were injured, he said.

A resident told the BBC by phone that clashes erupted between armed residents and militia when a member of the militia refused to pay for goods in a shop.

The shop owner shot allegedly shot and killed the man, prompting a retaliatory attack against the shop by members of the militia

The shop was burnt down and so was its owner’s family home nearby, the resident said.

A group of residents then clashed with militia at a camp which had been occupied by the militia, which was when the explosion occurred, according to reports.

Unconfirmed reports said the blast occurred at an ammunition depot within the camp.

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