A warplane belonging to General Khalifa Haftar’s troops has been shot down by forces loyal to the UN-backed government, its military spokesperson has claimed. It comes as Haftar is visiting the Egyptian president in Cairo.
The Libyan National Army’s (LNA) fighter jet was downed on Sunday south of the capital of Tripoli, Colonel Mohammed Gnunu, Tripoli’s military spokesman, confirmed without revealing any further details about the incident. Photos and videos that surfaced on social media appear to show the aftermath.
— CNW (@ConflictsW) April 14, 2019
Photos reportedly taken just now in Qasr bin Ghashir show where a fallen plane has hit very close to the detention centre. #libya #tripoli
"One jet hit by Khalifa (Haftar's) force now in front of our detention centre" - messaged an Eritrean there. pic.twitter.com/MU0VS9hOhi
— Sally Hayden (@sallyhayd) April 14, 2019
Some of those who posted the images claimed that jet crashed in Tripoli’s southeastern suburb of Ain Zara, while others said it fell in the town of Qasr bin Ghashir located south of the capital not far from the disused Tripoli International Airport. None of these reports could be independently verified.
The photos and videos showed plumes of grey and black smoke billowing in the sky in some deserted area. According to media reports, the pilot managed to eject from the jet before the crash. However, it is unclear whether he was captured by the GNA forces, as some reports on social media suggest, or managed to flee the scene.'
Read more: Libyan National Army jet shot down over Tripoli as Haftar visits Egypt