For a divided Libya, disastrous floods have become a rallying cry for unity

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The disastrous flooding that killed more than 11,000 people has fostered national solidarity among Libyans, long governed by opposing powers. In the early hours of Sept. 11, , sending a wall of water two stories high into the city and sweeping entire neighborhoods out to sea. At least 11,300 people were killed and a further 30,000 displaced.

Ali Khalifa, an oil rig worker from Zawiya, west of Tripoli, said his cousin and a group of other men from his neighborhood joined a convoy of vehicles heading to Derna to help out with relief efforts. Even the local scout squad participated, he said.

“The wound or pain of what happened in Derna hurt all the people from western Libya to southern Libya to eastern Libya,” he said. Hifter’s forces besieged Tripoli “We have even seen some military commanders arrive from the Tripoli allied military coalition in Derna, showing support,” said Claudia Gazzini, a senior Libya analyst at International Crisis Group.

Across the country, the disaster has also exposed the shortcomings of Libya’s fractured political system. Others have leveled blame for the burst dams on government officials.

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