Four members of east Libyan security forces were killed in Derna by a suicide bomber bearing a white flag as he drove towards a group of soldiers, a military spokesman said.
Ahmed al-Mismari, a spokesman for Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA), said the bomber detonated explosives packed in a white Chevrolet when he got close, having approached troops in central Derna asking to leave the combat zone.
The LNA is fighting to take Derna, the last city in eastern Libya outside its control, after launching a ground offensive against a coalition of local forces and Islamist militants last month.
Clashes continued in central Derna on Wednesday around the Al-Maghar neighbourhood where the LNA’s opponents were holed up, residents said.
“The main battle is over and we are fighting pockets of resistance in a square kilometre area,” Mismari told TV station Libyas Channel.
Residents said water supplies and cooking gas were restored in areas the LNA has taken. Water, power, food and medical supplies were largely cut off as the LNA offensive got under way.
The United Nations repeatedly warned about the impact of fighting on Derna’s population of around 125,000.