Residents of Tripoli protest against former rebels
Hundreds of residents demonstrated late Wednesday in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, against the continuing presence in the city of armed fighters who toppled late Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi, Arab media reported.
Protsters including children and elderly gathered in Tripoli's landmark Martyrs Square to demand "No Weapons in Tripoli." The rally was organized by the city council and backed by the interim government, Al-Arabiya television said.
"We want them out, as their presence and their weapons are causing friction inside the city, and it gives a bad image about our new Libya in front the rest of the world," a protester told Al-Arabiya.
On Tuesday, the Libyan interim government set a December 20 deadline for fighters to leave the capital and go back to their home towns, DPA reported.
The militia fighters, who hail mainly from the cities of Misrata and Zintan, fought a months-long civil war against Gaddafi's forces that ended with the liberation of Tripoli in August.
Since then, many have remained in the city, which has seen several clashes between residents and militiamen in the last two weeks.