Libyan army downs Turkish drone

The Libyan army announced yesterday that it shot down a Turkish drone when it attempted to land at Tripoli's Mitiga International Airport after targeting army positions and civilian facilities.

The Libyan army said it was able to shoot down a Turkish drone at Mitiga International Airport in Tripoli as it attempted to land after targeting army positions and killing four people in Wadi Rabea area south of Tripoli.

In addition, Maj. Gen. Mabrouk al-Ghazawi, commander of the Western Region Operations Group at the General Command of the Libyan National Army, condemned the bombing of Mitiga airport, denying the responsibility of the General Command Air Force in the bombing of the airport.

"There is no reason for regular forces to indiscriminately shell Mitiga airport with mortars, Grad rockets and other projectiles, in such a random manner that threatens the safety of civilians," he said. "All the evidence indicates that al-Wefaq militias were involved in the bombing of Mitiga airport, in an attempt to worsen the situation, and a desperate attempt to pin the matter on the national army," he said.

Military sources affiliated to the General Command of the Libyan Army confirmed to Al-Bayan newspaper that the bombing of the only civilian airport currently operating in the capital carries several messages, especially as it coincided with the landing of pilgrims returning from the Holy Land.

Rocket shells landed at Mitiga International Airport at dawn yesterday, injuring a number of pilgrims and injuring a plane in the runway, resulting in the suspension of air navigation, until further notice.

In the same context, the United Nations Support Mission in Libya condemned in the strongest terms, the attack on Mitiga airport, considering it a direct threat to the lives of pilgrims and civilian travelers, calling for an immediate halt to attacks against this vital facility and all infrastructure and civilian facilities.

The mission said in a statement that it had sent a team to assess the situation, which confirmed four rockets fell in civilian parts of the airport, resulting in damage to the plane carrying dozens of pilgrims, and wounded two crew. The Mission stated that indiscriminate attacks resulting in civilian deaths or injuries could amount to war crimes.


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