Gunmen Abduct Mayor Of Libyan Capital

Gunmen on Thursday abducted the mayor of Libya’s capital from his house overnight, authorities say.

The municipal council, in a statement said, “the municipality of central Tripoli and its residents received the news of the abduction of mayor Abdulraouf Baitelmal by a foolish party after they stormed his house by force of arms and took him to an unknown destination.”

The reason for the abduction was not immediately clear.

The council said it was suspending work in protest until further notice, and called on “competent authorities and residents” to work to secure his release.

“These acts directly threaten the establishment of the state and its civilian life,” the council said.

Government officials in Tripoli say security in the capital has improved over the past two years, though abductions remain common.

Armed groups have held real power on the ground in Tripoli since Libya’s 2011 uprising.

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