World, Africa

Tripoli airport resumes operations after brief closure

Mitiga airport was closed after pro-Haftar warplanes carried out attacks nearby

Walid Abdullah   | 21.04.2019
Tripoli airport resumes operations after brief closure Tripoli International Airport in Tripoli, Libya ( Hazem Turkia - Anadolu Agency )

TRIPOLI 

The Tripoli-based Mitiga International Airport has been reopened for air traffic after a brief closure, according to the airport administration on Sunday.  

In a statement, the administration said the airport was closed as warplanes affiliated with forces loyal to East Libya-based commander Khalifa Haftar were striking targets close to the airport.  

The administration denied that the closure came after the airport came under attack, stressing that it came for air safety measures.  

According to Anadolu Agency's correspondent, Haftar's air force launched on Saturday air strikes targeting several sites on the outskirts of Tripoli, including the Al-Muz area and the regions of Ain Zara and Tajoura.  

Since early April, Haftar, commander of forces loyal to a rival government in eastern Libya, has been launching a campaign to capture Tripoli, where a UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) is headquartered.  

At least 220 people have been killed and hundreds injured in recent clashes on Tripoli outskirts, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) on Saturday.  

Libya has remained beset by turmoil since long-serving leader Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed in a bloody NATO-backed uprising in 2011.  

Since then, the country has seen the emergence of two rival seats of power: one in eastern Libya, to which Haftar is affiliated, and another in Tripoli, which enjoys UN recognition.

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