Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Libya Update - 90 percent of aircraft parked at Tripoli's international Airport destroyed , Control tower damaged as well ( July 15 , 2014 ) - Libya is considering a deployment of international force to re-establish security amid a flare-up of violence in Tripoli which saw dozens of rockets destroy most of the civilian aircraft fleet at its international airport.......... Libya didn't get the meme - NATO and the US just destroy countries , they don't secure countries after an " unpopular " leader is ousted !


Zintan militia in control of Libya airport

Armed group, which has held Tripoli airport since fall of Gaddafi, repulse attempt by rival militias to take facility.

Last updated: 16 Jul 2014 00:27
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Fighting between rival militias wrecked 11 civilian planes at Tripoli's airport and damaged the control tower [Reuters]
Fighters from Libya's Zintan militia, armed with anti-aircraft guns and mortars, have fanned out across Tripoli's airport, transformed into a battlefield by two days of fighting that has cut the capital off from the outside world.
Fighting between rival militias has left the control tower damaged and wrecked 11 civilian planes parked on the tarmac. The main terminal building has been turned into a field hospital.
At least 15 people have been killed in the capital and the eastern city of Benghazi since Sunday, the Reuters news agency reported.
In Benghazi, irregular forces loyal to renegade former general Khalifa Haftar, a former Gaddafi ally, bombarded rival armed group bases as part of his self-declared campaign to oust militias.
Special forces clashed with militia fighters in the city.
US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday that Washington was working to help end to violence that has brought the north African country to the edge of chaos three years after the uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi.
The airport battle has prompted the UN to evacuate its staff from the country, where a new government is struggling to impose order over militias who rose up against Gaddafi and never disarmed.
The airport area is under the control of former fighters from the western town of Zintan who have held it since the fall of Tripoli in 2011.
Rival militias, who want to impose Islamic law, have fought with the Zintanis in recent days but failed to dislodge them.
For the past three years, the new authorities have tried to rein in militia fighters by putting them on the government payroll.
'Deeply concerned'
NATO helped rebels topple Gaddafi with air strikes, but the Western military alliance has not intervened since then to stem the subsequent chaos.
Kerry said the US, whose ambassador was killed in an attack in Benghazi in 2012, had sent diplomats to seek consensus among Libyan political groups.
"We are deeply concerned about the level of violence in Libya," Kerry told a news conference in Vienna.
"It is dangerous and it must stop. We are working very, very hard through our special envoys to find the political cohesion... that can bring people together to create stronger capacity in the government of Libya so that this violence can end."
Government spokesman Ahmed Lamine said Tripoli was studying the possibility of bringing in international forces to improve security.
Western powers fear chaos in Libya will allow arms and fighters to flow across its borders.
Political deadlock
A fragile government and parliament have been deadlocked in political struggles between rival religious, nationalist and tribal factions, each allied to competing brigades of heavily armed former rebels who refuse to disarm.
The Zintanis and their allies in Tripoli are loosely aligned with the more nationalist National Forces Alliance led by a former Gaddafi official.
Their main rivals include brigades from the city of Misrata and other militias closer to the Justice and Construction Party, a religious political bloc.
The UN mission in Libya said the closure of Tripoli airport and the deteriorating security situation made it impossible for it to operate.
A Zintani airport official said the control tower would need replacement equipment to be imported before it could be fixed.
The airport in Misrata was also forced shut on Monday, while in the east, Benghazi airport has been closed since May.
Source:
Agencies







Libya Herald.....


High casualties at Tripoli Airport as control tower hit

By Ashraf Abdul Wahab.
Tripoli, 15 July 2014:
As many as 15 people have been killed and 70 wounded at Tripoli Airport as missiles have rained down hitting its control tower and two planes, sources on the ground have claimed.
Reports have come in of several fires at the airport as its air traffic control tower burned after being hit by one rocket. The attack on Zintani forces on the premises has been said to be coming from forces in Qasr Ben Ghashir and Wadi Rabia. Zintanis have also returned fire at the residential areas.
In Janzour where tensions have also run high in recent days the local Fursan Janzour Brigade has blocked the two roads into the suburb in anticipation of an attack from Wareshefana forces allied with the Zintanis.



Six massive bombs diffused in Tripoli

By Ashraf Abdul Wahab and Naam Alkhoshi.
Car bombs said to have been discovered near th Qaaqaa Brigade's headquarters in Tripoli
Car bombs said to have been discovered near th Qaaqaa Brigade’s headquarters in Tripoli (Photo: Social media)
Tripoli, 15 July 2014:
Six huge bombs discovered in three cars in Tripoli’s Salaheddin district were diffused yesterday by the Counter Criminal Agency.
Investigators said the bombs which weighed 200 kilos each would have caused significant human and material losses had they been detonated. They were said to have been found by Qaaqaa’s border patrol guards who spotted the three abandoned, unmarked Opel cars containing the bombs, two each, near their headquarters at Salaheddin’s Gypsum Gate.
The detonation devices, which have since been dismantled by bomb disposal experts under the direction of the Ministry of Interior, were remote controlled.
Two car bombs exploded not far from the same Qaaqaa headquarters in the early hours of Sunday morning, just before the first clashes began at Tripoli International Airport.






http://rt.com/news/172780-tripoli-airport-attack-libya/

90% of aircraft destroyed at Tripoli airport, Libya may seek international assistance

Published time: July 15, 2014 04:10
Edited time: July 15, 2014 05:24

A charred airplane lies on the ground at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups. AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)
A charred airplane lies on the ground at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups. AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)
Libya is considering a deployment of international force to re-establish security amid a flare-up of violence in Tripoli which saw dozens of rockets destroy most of the civilian aircraft fleet at its international airport.
“The government is looking into the possibility of making an appeal for international forces on the ground to re-establish security and help the government impose its authority,” a government spokesman, Ahmed Lamine said in a statement.
Burnt vehicles are seen in the compound of Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups (AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)
Burnt vehicles are seen in the compound of Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups (AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)

The statement comes after deadly clashes led to the closing of the main international airport in Tripoli on Sunday, which came under a renewed rocket attack on Monday.
According to the country’s government at least seven people have been killed at the airport since Sunday, and around 90 percent of aircraft parked at the hub were destroyed or made inoperable. The control tower was damaged as well as several Grad rockets struck the transit hub.

“Dozens of rockets were fired at the airport,” Al-Jilani al-Dahech, a security official at the scene, told AFP, while another source said one aircraft took a direct hit. Libya's main carriers Afriqiyah Airways and Libyan Airlines were damaged in the fighting, a security official added.
The wreckage of a truck and an airplane are seen at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups the previous day. (AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)
The wreckage of a truck and an airplane are seen at Tripoli international airport in the Libyan capital on July 14, 2014 following fighting between rival armed groups the previous day. (AFP Photo / Mahmud Turkia)

At least two soldiers were killed and a number of planes were damaged when a militia shelled the airport on Monday, according to a Libyan soldier who spoke with Reuters. “Several planes and cars belonging to citizens were hit,” said Abdel Rahman. A hall used by customs controls had also been hit, he added.
On Monday Libya suspended all flights to and from its third city, Misrata, which is tied to Tripoli airport for its operations, while Benghazi airport has been closed since May.

An airport source in the capital told AFP that the decision to close the airport in Misrata was taken for “technical reasons.”
“The headquarters for the entire western region is at Tripoli airport, and following its closure, Misrata airport also has to close,” said the official, speaking on condition of anonymity.
“Libya is now practically cut off from the outside world,” a source at Tripoli airport told AFP. Only two tiny airports are now operating at Bayda and Tobruk in the east of the country.

The fighting in Tripoli escalated to a new level on Sunday when clashes erupted between Islamist militant groups and militias from the southwestern city of Zintan. At the root of the recent feud lies the country’s June general election, marred by fraud allegations. The country was left in a power vacuum since the 2011 overthrow and killing of long-time strongman colonel Muammar Gaddafi.
Meanwhile, medical sources told Reuters that at least six people were killed and 25 wounded in Benghazi as fighting between security forces and rival clans continue since late Sunday.
The security situation is so tense that the UN mission in the country announced the temporary closure of its activities. Libya's neighbors Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Niger, Sudan and Tunisia issued a call for dialogue on Monday, urging to set up twin commissions to broker talks and prevent any spillover of violence into the neighboring region.

and.....

https://twitter.com/arabthomness

International Airport about 1/2 an hour ago. Heavy fighting blasted one of the airplanes in 's capital





Libya Herald...


“Dozens” of rockets fired at Tripoli Airport

By Ashraf Abdul Wahab.
Tripoli, 14 July 2014:
Rockets have again struck Tripoli International Airport just 32 hours after similar missile attacks closed the airport yesterday.
A source at the airport told the Libya Herald this evening that the assault was still going on. He said that the rockets were being fired from Qasr Ben Ghashir just to the north of the airport and had threatened the few remaining aircraft there. He could not say, however, who had launched the attack.
Zintani forces remained firmly in control of the airport following yesterday’s clashes but the source believed that Misratan-led militias may have led the attack.
Photos on social media have shown one passenger jet, allegedly hit by a rocket, wreathed in flames and billowing black smoke. The first reports of the rocket assault emerged at around 9 pm at which point a series of muffled explosions could be heard in Tripoli centre, just over 25 kilometres away from the airport.
The Ministry of Interior has asked residents yesterday to stay away from the clashes taking place around Tripoli International Airport and on the road between the airport and Qasr Ben Ghashir, which it had earlier claimed to control.





$250 million Afriqiyah Airways plane “written off” in Tripoli Airport fighting

Libya Herald Reporters.
A picture believed to show the "written off" A330, whose tail section was also riddled.(Picture: social media)
A picture believed to show the “written off” A330, whose tail section was also reportedly riddled with bullets.(Photo: social media)
Tripoli, 13 July 2014:
There were unconfirmed reports this evening that two Afriqiyah Airways planes were hit in the fighting at Tripoli International Airport and that one of them, a $250 million Airbus A330 has been damaged beyond repair.
A respected and normally reliable source on social media claimed tonight that a new Afriqiyah Airways Airbus A330, which was parked up on the apron, was hit in the underbelly, as fighting raged around the airport. The tail section has also sustained multiple bullet hits. Engineers are apparently saying that the damage seems so severe, the aircraft may have to be written off.
An A320 from the same airline is also said to have  been damaged, though less severely.
In addition, there were reports, that cannot yet be verified, that all airspace in Western Libya, including that over Misrata, has been closed by Air Traffic Controllers in Malta until Wednesday and that, as a result,  the only functioning main airport in the country is now that at Labraq, near Beida. Earlier today it was announced that some flights had been rerouted to Misrata.
For a period this March, after rockets were fired at Tripoli airport, Afriqiyah Airways flew all its aircraft for overnight parking at Misrata.