At least nine people were killed and 19 wounded, mostly civilians, in heavy clashes overnight in Benghazi as government forces tried to oust Islamist militants holed up in Libya’s eastern port city, medical sources said on Thursday.

The fighting late on Wednesday involved aircraft and ground troops and followed more than a week of the fiercest clashes between militants, former rebel fighters and government forces in Benghazi and the capital Tripoli since the 2011 war against Muammar Gaddafi.

Sporadic shelling continued in parts of Tripoli early on Thursday though there were no immediate reports of any casualties after heavy clashes a day earlier. […]