TRIPOLI (Yonhap) -- South Koreans living in Tripoli said Tuesday that there is deep anxiety over the future of Libya amid severe shortages of food and electricity, although fighting has mostly ended and rebels are trying to resume services in the capital.
About 10 Korean nationals remain in Tripoli, enduring a bloody battle that has stretched on for six months here between rebel forces and the regime of longtime ruler Moammar Gadhafi. This week, some family members of Gadhafi fled Libya to Algeria, further evidence that he has lost control of Libya, but the embattled leader himself has yet to appear.
"Although rebel forces are said to have taken full control of Tripoli, I still feel anxiety," Kim Won-geum, a Korean resident of the town of Janzour, in western Tripoli, told Yonhap News Agency in an interview.
"Armed men are still spotted in the streets and Gadhafi's soldiers are said to be hiding. There is a possibility of being hit by stray bullets in the evening," the 61-year-old said.
Kim said his family -- his wife, 54, and daughter, 11 -- have not left their home since rebel forces swept into the capital early last week.
Kim, who has been living in Tripoli for a decade running a lodging business, confirmed that the other Korean nationals in the capital are safe.
Kim's wife, Park Gyeong-ok, said she had heard sounds of shooting and fatal accidents during gunfights between rebel government forces.
"I heard that an armed man was shot dead when he was mistakenly targeted by one of his colleagues," Park said. "I think we'd better stay inside."
Along with lingering anxiety, Kim said his family is grappling with frequent blackouts and severe shortages of food.
When an Yonhap News Agency reporter visited his home, a power outage had cut off power to his refrigerator and air conditioner despite the height of summer heat.
"There are more than two power outages a day," Kim said.
However, Park, his wife, expressed hope that Libya would stabilize in the long term.
"If the dust settles and public order is maintained, Libya will become a good nation to live in," she said.
South Korea has officially recognized Libya's rebel-led National Transitional Council as the nation's legitimate government and has pledged to offer humanitarian aid to the Libyan people.
Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan will attend an international conference this week in Paris on Libya's future as nations around the world step up their efforts to help Libyan rebels secure victory against Gadhafi.