An aircraft from Libyan forces controlling Tripoli crashed near the Tunisian border and may have been shot down, Tunisia’s state news agency TAP reported on Friday. The aircraft went down 5 kilometers from the frontier inside Libya, TAP said, but did not provide any further details.
Libyan officials did not immediately confirm the incident. Libya is embroiled in a battle between two rival governments and their armed forces; one an internationally recognized administration operating out of the east of the country, and the other, a faction that took over the capital Tripoli in the summer. The forces allied with Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni’s recognized government and Tripoli’s armed forces have been conducting air strikes on each other.
A jet from Tripoli’s forces this week attacked an airport in the western town of Zintan near the Tunisian border. The United Nations is trying to negotiate a deal between the factions to form a unity government to stop the North African country’s slide into wider civil war, with Islamist militants increasingly using the chaos to gain a foothold in Libya, Reuters reports.