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No citizenship applications received from Libya, minister says

FILE PHOTO: Libyan National Army (LNA) members, commanded by Khalifa Haftar, head out of Benghazi to reinforce the troops advancing to Tripoli, in Benghazi, Libya April 7, 2019. REUTERS/Esam Omran Al-Fetori/File Photo

Cyprus has not received a request from Libya asking the government not to grant citizenship to four of its nationals, nor were any applications made, Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides said on Thursday.

The minister was commenting on a report in The Libya Observer that his Libyan counterpart, Fathi Bashagha, had asked him not to issue passports for four sons of Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, the head of the Libyan National Army currently engaged in a civil war, after news said they were applying for them currently.

“We have not officially received such a letter but such applications from Libya do not appear to exist,” Petrides said. “In any case, the government is alert and takes such information into consideration.”

Quoting unnamed diplomatic sources, the Cyprus News Agency said no such letter had been received.

The Observer said Bashaga had posted the letter on Facebook on Tuesday.

“Our investigations and intelligence say Khalid, Saddam, Al-Seddiq and Belqasim Haftar have all applied for passports in Cyprus, thus we call on you to halt this process as those persons are involved in different lawsuits in Libya, including robbing Central Bank of Libya in Benghazi among other crimes.” Bashagha’s letter reads according to the Observer.

 

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