By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 23 January 2015:
A policeman was killed today . . .[restrict]when gunmen shot at members of the diplomatic police protecting the Libya headquarters of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Tripoli’s Nufleen district.
It is not known if the UNDP or the UN was the intended target, or the diplomatic police.
The building was empty at the time, the UNDP having withdrawn its staff some time ago, and this was generally known. Only the diplomatic police were there to protect it. Moreover, according to the Tripoli office of the Libyan news agency LANA, the killers fired directly at the police deployed outside and then sped off.
This is the third time the diplomatic police have been the victims of an attack in less than a month. In late December, a car bomb exploded outside the diplomatic police headquarters in Sidi Mesri district.
A week ago, a bomb exploded outside the Algerian embassy in central Tripoli slightly injuring three people of whom two were from the diplomatic police. Again, the building was empty – the Algerians having also evacuated their embassy like many other countries – and this was generally known.
In both the case of the diplomatic police headquarters and the Algerian embassy, responsibility was subsequently claimed by the “Islamic State of Tripoli”, supposedly the local presence Daesh (the Islamic State), although Libya Dawn insists the organisation does not exist in the capital.
A UN official this evening told the Libya Herald that it was trying to establish what might have happened.
The UNDP office is not directly connected to UNSMIL.