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April 25, 2014

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Libya: 5 Egyptian diplomats, employees abducted

Updated Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014 | 2:23 a.m.

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — A spokesman for Libya's Foreign Ministry says that unidentified gunmen have seized five Egyptian diplomats and embassy employees overnight in Tripoli.

Egypt had earlier reported that its administrative attaché had been kidnapped. Mohammed al-Asswad says the abductions, which also included the cultural attaché, took place Friday and early Saturday in two separate incidents.

The abduction came hours after Libya's state news agency reported the arrest of a militia commander, Shaaban Hadiya, in Egypt. Hadiya was at the top Revolutionaries Operation Room, blamed for the abduction of Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zidan last year.

Kidnappings are rife in Libya, suffering from a security vacuum since the 2011 overthrow of dictator Muammar Gadhafi.