Four foreigners working at power plant kidnapped in Libya, official says

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Four foreign engineers working for the Turkish construction firm Enka were kidnapped in southwest Libya on Friday, a Libyan state electricity official said.

The men, who were Turkish and South African, were seized while travelling from the airport in the town of Ubari to a power plant they were helping to build, the official said, asking not to be named. There was no immediate indication who had abducted them.

In a statement on its website, Enka referred to three Turkish citizens being kidnapped.

“Around midday today in Libya three of our citizens, two of them our personnel who were temporarily working in the country, were kidnapped by unidentified people while they were travelling outside the building site,” the statement said.

“Our company is following the subject closely, in contact with Turkish and Libyan authorities,” it added.

Kidnapping is rife across Libya, which has been in turmoil since an uprising unseated autocratic leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. Work at the Ubari plant has been going on for years, disrupted periodically by tribal clashes or other security problems.

(Reporting by Ayman al-Warfalli; Writing by Ulf Laessing; Editing by Kevin Liffey and Alison Williams)