TRIPOLI, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Libya's UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez Serraj on Sunday condemned the attack by armed groups on displaced families of Tawergha near the city of Bani Walid, some 180 km southwest of the capital Tripoli.
"Head of the Presidential Council of the Government of National Accord strongly condemns the intimidation towards Tawerghan families by armed groups near Gararat Al-Gatf area, in an attempt to undermine the reconciliation agreement between Misurata and Touragha cities," Serraj said in a statement.
"These groups have been and continue to fight efforts of the Libyans to achieve consensus," Serraj said, noting that support would continue for the implementation of the reconciliation agreement.
"The Presidential Council praises the efforts of the Misurata Municipal Council, the local Council of Tawergha, and the reconciliation and elders committees of both cities, who continue to work to secure the return of the people of Tawergha," the statement added.
Local media reported that armed groups attacked a temporary camp for the Tawargha refugees near the village of Gararat Al-Gatf of Bani Walid, where they burned families' tents, beat some of them, and stole some of their vehicles.
The groups are suspected of belonging to Misurata Military Council, which refuses the return of the Tawerghans to their city.
On Dec. 26, 2017, Serraj announced that Feb. 1 would be the date for the return of Tawerghans to their city, which they fled several years ago.
However, the return was halted after armed groups from Misurata denied their entry into the town, despite the fact that the two neighboring cities signed a UN-sponsored reconciliation agreement in August 2016.
During the 2011 uprising, some residents of Tawergha allied with the forces of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi against the rebels of the nearby city of Misurata.
After Gaddafi's regime was toppled, those residents, accused by Misuratans of actively participating in the fighting against them, fled their homes to other cities in Libya. Since then, they have been internally displaced.