- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 31, 2014

Islamists who gained control of a U.S. Embassy residential compound in Libya last week posted a video online of the men throwing a spring break-like pool party at the property.

A commander for the umbrella Islamist militia group, the Dawn of Libya, told The Associated Press that his fighters had been in control of the compound since last week. The group granted access to the compound to an AP reporter, who said some windows had been broken, but most of the equipment there appeared to remain untouched. The journalist saw treadmills, food, televisions and computers still inside.

A video posted online showed the men having a pool party at the compound. Video showed the men cheering each other as they took turns swan diving off the balcony into a pool below.

U.S. Ambassador to Libya Deborah Jones tweeted that the video appeared to have been shot in at the embassy’s residential annex, AP reported.

“To my knowledge & per recent photos the US Embassy Tripoli chancery & compound is now being safeguarded and has not been ransacked,” she said.

U.S. diplomats evacuated the compound and Tripoli last month under a U.S. military escort as fighting between rival militias intensified and thousands fled, AP reported.

Libya’s government has largely relied on militias for law enforcement, but militia violence in the capital has created a security vacuum. It remains unclear who the U.S. left in control of guarding its facilities after its personnel evacuated, AP reported.

The Dawn of Libya militia said last week it managed to seize control of Tripoli’s airport and drive a rival militia out of the capital. It is now deployed around the capital and has called on diplomats to return now that the fighting has waned, AP reported.