By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli, 23 March 2015:
The Libyan army is claiming to have shot down a Libya Dawn MiG 23 that . . .[restrict]was involved on a raid Zintan airport. The aircraft was certainly lost. The pilot died in the crash while the co-pilot was captured and taken to Zintan, where he is receiving hospital treatment for undisclosed injuries.
The dead pilot was named as Omar Khalid Saeed, originally from Jadu but who lived in Hadba, Tripoli. The copilot has not been named.
General Staff spokesman Ahmed Al-Missmari told the Libya Herald that the warplane had come down in Qaser Al-Haj, south of Rajban. The army put out photographs of the wreckage.
The MiG 23 is thought to have been one of a pair operated by Dawn from Misrata. These machines, of unknown origin, had reportedly been repaired by East European technicians.
Misrata, where a car bomb yesterday wounded at least five people outside a security headquarters has always refused to confirm the presence of the MiGs It is also thought that it has used a training aircraft for bomb attacks on government positions.
One odd element is that today’s crash site is near Rajban, a town which had previously, albeit reluctantly, declared its support for Libya Dawn.
Missmari said that in its turn, an airforce plane had attacked Tarhuna this morning. The strike was aimed at the premises of the Tabeeb Company, which he said was being used as an ammunition store and training area for Libya Dawn militias. [/restrict]