by NBC News staff and wire services
Hundreds of Libyan protesters stormed the compound of Ansar al Sharia in Benghazi Friday night, driving out its militant occupants and setting fire to the compound, in an unprecedented public backlash against armed groups that have run rampant in the country since the 2011 ouster of former dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
Ansar al Sharia is the militant al-Qaeda inspired group that some allege played a role in the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi that left four Americans dead, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.
An estimated 30,000 Libyans marched to the group’s brigade compound earlier in the day in protest, chanting, "No to militias," the Associated Press reported.
The demonstrators demanded that militias in the country hand over their weapons to the fledgling post-Gadhafi government, and declared their solidarity with the United States in condemning terrorism. [MORE]