Local media in the Central African Republic revealed that six Libyan diplomats have been expelled. They were placed under house arrest and had their passports confiscated, before they were deported to Morocco.
The authorities announced the expulsion of the Libyan diplomats, a day after arresting them at Bangui airport. Ambassador Issa Omar Barouni is among these diplomats.
“The airport security forces arrested them upon their arrival from the Kingdom of Morocco. They then placed them under house arrest in a hotel, in the capital under guard,” the local news website CNC reported.
A presidential official of CAR explained that there were doubts about the validity of their visas, and that the government “preferred to expel them.” Meanwhile, the Libyan diplomats confirm that their arrival took place in accordance with international norms.
The embassy’s affairs have been running for several years now through the Chargé d’Affaires. In 2018, he announced that he would not recognise the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA), and aligned himself with the eastern-based Interim Government. The GNA dismissed him from his duties in December 2019.
Since then, Tripoli has accused Bangui of obstructing any attempt to appoint a new ambassador.