Libyan Islamist Fighters Say They Have Overrun Tripoli International Airport: Reports

Libyan Islamist fighters announced Saturday that they captured Tripoli International Airport after more than a week of fighting with nationalist army men, the Agence France-Presse reported.

According to the AFP, a statement played on television said that “Fajr Libya announced that it totally controls Tripoli International Airport.” That report was verified by Al Arabiya News.

Earlier this week, black smoke was seen rising from the strategic site as ongoing fighting continued in the region.

Black smoke is seen in the area of Tripoli’s international airport, on August 20, 2014. Regular thuds from rival militias’ battles near Tripoli airport have become part of daily life for the Libyan capital’s residents, busy coping with power cuts and petrol shortages. (AFP/Getty Images)

Images posted on social media appeared to show the Islamists taking control of the airport Saturday, but the authenticity of the photos could not be independently verified by TheBlaze.

The strategic location has been closed since July 13 because of ongoing fighting, the AFP reported.

Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter