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Warplane strikes Tripoli's only functioning airport

9 April 2019

Libyan authorities closed the only functioning airport in the capital Tripoli after an air strike, an airport security official said on Monday. A warplane bombed Mitiga airport as eastern forces advance on Libya's capital disregarding global appeals for a truce in the latest cycle of warfare since Muammar Gaddafi's fall in 2011.

The closure of Mitiga airport leaves Misrata airport, 200 km to the east down the coast, as the closest option for Tripoli residents. Witnesses said the eastern Libyan National Army (LNA) forces of Khalifa Haftar - a former general in Gaddafi's army - had lost control of the old airport and withdrawn from positions on the airport road. Forces allied to the Tripoli administration were seen inside the airport, while clashes with the eastern forces were raging south of the airport, a Reuters reporter at the scene and residents said.