Tripoli, March 25: It is reported that Mukhtar Al-Akhdar has resigned from the leadership of the Zintan brigade holding Tripoli International Airport.
The . . .[restrict]report follows the failure today, Sunday, of the brigade to hand over the airport to the ministries of the interior and transport.
The poltiically ambitious Al-Akhadar had promised to hand it over today. It had been announced that it would occur on Sunday, first at 3.00pm, then at 6.00pm and then did not happen at all.
Sources close to the Interior Ministry say that there was a row within the brigade prior to the planned handover to the civil authorities.
Most of the members had demanded that the Interior Ministry employ 500 brigadesmen at the airport. When the ministry refused, they decided to stay put, leading to Al-Akhdar’s resignation.
At the beginning of the month, the deputy leader of the brigade, Ali Koba, said that members of the brigade were opposed to government plans to integrate them into the army or the police. He said they would not be quitting the airport.
At the time of the Misrata conference, which on March 8 ordered all brigades to hand over everything they controlled to national authorities, it was said that the brigade were reluctant to go despite being ordered to do so by Zintan’s local council.
It is being reported in Tripoli that as the result of the failure, flights in and out of the airport could be cancelled on Monday.