The Head of the High Council of State (HCS), Khalid Al-Mishri, called Saturday on both the Presidential Council and the government to open an immediate investigation into the exchange of fire between armed groups in Souq Al-Thulata roundabout area in the capital, Tripoli.
The Head of the HCS demanded, in a post on his Facebook page, that the results of the investigation be published to the public and that those involved be punished, adding that if they fail to do so, they would be held fully responsible for the state of chaos and disregard for the lives and properties of civilians.
Al-Mishri described the Friday clashes, which took place in a densely populated area, as "an indifference to the lives of citizens by undisciplined armed groups."
Likewise, the Libyan Foreign Minister, Najla Al-Mangoush, said on Twitter that using the "language of violence and intimidation of children as they try to enjoy the fresh air of their hometown on Friday is totally rejected," adding that those involved in the incident should be held accountable "because Libyans deserve peace."
The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), relatedly, said it was deeply concerned about these developments, during an extremely sensitive period of political polarization which the United Nations, international partners, and concerned Libyans are making efforts to resolve, calling on Libya’s political and security actors to exercise maximum restraint, demonstrate responsible leadership and address all disputes, both at the local and national levels, through dialogue.
The US ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland, said: "Such clashes should not continue or escalate and those responsible will pay a price with the Libyan people and the international community.”
The European Union's ambassador to Libya, Jose Sabadell, said on Twitter that what happened at Souq Al-Thulata "is shocking and shameful. Arms were fired at a park where children run and play. Public spaces in Tripoli belong to families, not to men with guns."