Amman urges Libya to secure release of abducted Jordanians

The Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said the nationals must return to Jordan. (File/AFP)
Updated 02 July 2019

Amman urges Libya to secure release of abducted Jordanians

  • The three Jordanians were abducted in August of last year
  • Libyan foreign minister said he is personally following the matter

AMMAN: Jordan called Tuesday on Libya’s internationally recognized government to facilitate the release of three Jordanian nationals abducted by a militia last year.
Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi spoke with his Libyan counterpart Mohammed Tahir Syala about the “case of three Jordanians abducted in Libya since August last year,” the Jordanian foreign ministry said in a statement.
“The Libyan authorities must immediately work to release (them) and return them to the kingdom,” Safadi said.
Syala said he was “personally following the matter” on the recommendation of the chief of Libya’s Government of National Accord, Fayez Al-Sarraj, according to the Jordanian statement.
The group’s release was delayed because they were detained by one militia and then handed to another, he said, but Libyan authorities had recently located them and “handed their case over to the attorney general to end the investigation and release them.”
Officials in Libya have not commented publicly on the matter.
Jordan has contacted Libya multiple times about the detainees through official channels, the statement said.
A source at the Jordanian foreign ministry said they were in Libya on “private business.”
Libya was plunged into a bloody power struggle between multiple militias following a NATO-backed uprising that led to dictator Muammar Qaddafi’s death in 2011.
Abductions are commonplace and foreign workers are often kidnapped by armed groups and held for ransom.
Jordan in September 2014 called on its citizens not to travel to Libya due to security risks.


Algerian court jails protesters over election

Updated 19 November 2019

Algerian court jails protesters over election

ALGIERS: An Algerian court has jailed four protesters for 18 months for disrupting a candidate’s campaign for the Dec. 12 presidential election which is opposed by a mass protest movement.
The court sentenced the four on Monday after protests on Sunday in the western city of Tlemcen, where one of the five candidates, Ali Benflis, was campaigning. No details were available on what their exact actions were.
Algeria’s authorities are trying to quell a protest movement that erupted in February to demand the departure of the country’s ruling hierarchy, an end to corruption and the army’s withdrawal from politics.
The army, which has emerged as the most powerful institution in the country, has pushed for next month’s election as a means to end the protests and restore normality. The former president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, quit in April.
The judgment comes a week after a series of other prison sentences were handed down to protesters who had raised flags with Berber symbols during earlier demonstrations.
Several opposition leaders have also been held during the protests, and charged with contributing to damaging army morale.
However, the authorities have also detained numerous current and former senior officials on corruption charges, and have jailed some of them including the once untouchable former intelligence chief.
The protesters have rejected any presidential election carried out now, saying the continued presence of Bouteflika allies in the upper echelons of the government mean it cannot be free or fair.
Human Rights Watch said last week that the arrest of scores of protesters looked like “part of a pattern of trying to weaken opposition to Algeria’s interim rulers and their determination to hold presidential elections.”