TRIPOLI, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Landmines on Wednesday killed eight civilians in Libya's eastern city of Darna, where the army is fighting militants who have controlled the city since earlier in May, a military official said.
"Eight civilians were killed as a result of the explosion of a number of landmines planted by terrorists in the western entrance of Darna," the official told Xinhua late on Wednesday.
"The landmines exploded when a number of civilians tried to leave Darna to nearby areas and towns in order to get fuel and food. As they approached the exit of the city, specifically near the municipal stadium, a number of mines exploded, causing civilian casualties," added the official, who requested anonymity.
The army has been besieging Darna since 2015, demanding that the Shura Council of the Mujahideen, a coalition of Islamist militias, leave.
The army accused the armed group of being loyal to al-Qaida.
Landmines planted by the group are major obstacles facing the army, which is making steady progress towards taking control of Darna.
Humanitarian coordinator for the UN Support Mission in Libya Maria Ribeiro recently called on the army to allow humanitarian aid to enter the city.
Since the beginning of the fight between the army and the militants, more than 30 soldiers were killed and more than 40 others were injured, according to military and medical sources.