Gunmen storm Libyan TV station

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iol newsp ic EF04_LIBYA-SECURITY-_1126_11 Reuters A member of the Libyan army stands guard along a street following clashes in Benghazi. File picture: Esam Omran Al-Fetori

Tripoli - Gunmen stormed an independent Libyan television channel in the capital Tripoli overnight, Dubai-based broadcaster Al-Arabiya reported Wednesday.

Armed men entered the offices of the Al-Aseema satellite channel and ordered staff out, the station's head of news Fathi bin Issa told Al-Arabiya.

Al-Aseema showed looped CCTV footage of armed men entering a building, while a scrolling bar said that its technical team was trying to resume live broadcasts. There was no claim of responsibility for the attack, which comes after the abduction of several journalists.

The editor of the Tarabulus newspaper was abducted Monday by gunmen who questioned him about his work and political views before releasing him the following day, according to the local Solidarity Press Agency.

Three reporters with Al-Wataniya Television were kidnapped on Sunday.

Libya has seen increasing political tension since the Islamist-dominated interim parliament last week voted to extend its mandate, due to end on February 7.

Libya's post-revolutionary rulers have been struggling to assert their authority given a proliferation of weapons and militias since the killing of dictator Muammar Gaddafi in October 2011.


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