He said the minister survived the attack, and his bodyguards pursued the attackers, killing one and arresting two others.
The Interior Ministry said in a statement that Bashagha was returning to his home in the Janzour district when gunmen in an armored vehicle opened fire on his convoy.
The statement described the attack as an “assassination attempt” for the minister.
Earlier on Sunday, Bashagha met with the head of the National Oil Corporation, Mustafa Sanallah, to discuss the security of oil installations and how to enhance the independence of the corporation “to ensure a fair distribution of wealth among all Libyans.” He posted a picture of them on his Twitter account, describing their meeting as “fruitful”.
The US ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland, condemned the attack and called for an investigation to be held to hold those responsible to account.
“Minister Bashagha’s focus on ending the influence of rogue militias has our full support,” said Norland.
The UN special envoy to Libya Jan Kubis also urged a “full, prompt and transparent investigation” into the incident, saying it was aimed at “obstructing the political process and other efforts to support Libya and its people.”
He said the attack also showed “how important it is to keep all weapons in the hands of legitimate authorities only.”
Oil-rich Libya plunged into chaos after the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that ousted dictator Muammar Gaddafi and killed him. The country is divided between two governments, one in the east and the other in the west, each supporting a wide range of militias and foreign powers.
Earlier this month, a body selected by the United Nations and made up of Libyans on both sides appointed an interim government – a three-member presidential council and a prime minister – to lead the country through elections scheduled for December 24.
The newly appointed government, which has not yet resumed its powers, called on the judicial authorities to reveal the circumstances of the accident and bring those responsible to justice.
Bashagha was a contender for the position of Prime Minister, and in the end Abdelhamid Mohamed Dabaiba was chosen to lead the transitional government.
The forum also chose Muhammad Yunus Al-Manafi, a Libyan diplomat from the east of the country, to lead the Presidency Council.
Copyright 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.