Irregular forces loyal to former army general Khalifa Haftar take their positions with their weapons during clashes with Islamist militants in the eastern city of Benghazi June 2, 2014. REUTERS/Stringer
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Fierce fighting between Islamists and a rogue Libyan general killed at least 18 people in Benghazi on Monday, triggering fears of an all-out war as hospitals urged citizens to donate blood.An air force commander said the clashes erupted when three Islamist groups, including Ansar al-Sharia, attacked a base of elite forces who support the renegade general, Khalifa Haftar.The air force retaliated by launching strikes on the assailants, added Werfelli, who along with the elite forces backs Haftar's campaign against Islamists accused of repeated violence in Benghazi.The latest bloodshed comes a day after Haftar's forces launched fresh air raids on Islamists in Benghazi, with one strike targeting a meeting of Ansar al-Sharia, one of his aides said.Ansar al-Sharia, classified as a terrorist group by the United States, was backed by the February 17 Brigades of ex-rebel leader Rafallah al-Sahati and the Libya Shield Force Islamist groups, said Werfelli.
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