Libya militia takes control of Tripoli airport

BBC

An armed brigade has taken over Libya’s main airport in the capital, Tripoli, demanding the release of a senior leader who went missing on Sunday.

The militiamen entered the airport with tanks and armoured vehicles and occupied the runway, forcing flights to be diverted.

It is unclear if the group’s commander has been kidnapped or is being held for questioning by the government.

The group is refusing to leave until its demands are met.

The BBC’s Rana Jawad, on the tarmac at Tripoli airport, said that at least two dozen armed militiamen are at the scene.

She adds that the situation is chaotic, although not overtly dangerous at the moment, with reports that the brigade are in negotiations with security officials.

The brigade has placed an anti-aircraft gun underneath each of the planes on the tarmac, our correspondent says.

A representative from the brigade’s hometown of Tarhouna in western Libya is at the airport to negotiate with the rebels and convince them to give up their action.

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