Tunisia says 14 nationals abducted in Libya
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the kidnapping
By Yosra Ouanes
Tunisian authorities said that 14 nationals have been abducted in conflict-ridden Libya.
“We are following the situation of Tunisian workers abducted by gunmen on the outskirts of the city of Zawiya” in northwestern Libya, the Tunisian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The ministry said Foreign Minister Khamis al-Jahnawi was communicating with his Libyan counterpart “to ensure the safety of the abductees and accelerate their release”.
The Tunisian Consulate in Tripoli, for its part, said it was communicating with Libyan authorities to “end this crisis without delay”.
Tunisian local media said a Libyan group has kidnapped the workers on Thursday in response to the arrest of a Libyan national in Tunisia.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the kidnapping.
In 2015, a group of Tunisian diplomats were abducted in Libya, in a move decried by Tunisian authorities as a “blatant attack on Tunisia’s sovereignty”.
Libya has been beset by turmoil since 2011, when a bloody NATO-backed uprising led to the ouster and death of strongman Muammar Gaddafi after more than four decades in power.
Since then, Libya’s stark political divisions have yielded two rival seats of power -- one in Tobruk and another in Tripoli -- and a host of heavily armed militia groups.