International Ops 2018

Flight Service Bureau | OPSGROUP

Tag: HLLM

HLLL Tripoli FIR 2018 Operational Changes – Libya

We’ll use this page for Libya updates, including HLLL/Tripoli FIR, HLLT/Tripoli Airport and HLLM/Mitiga Airport.

Both airports in Tripoli are focal points for fighting. Given their strategic value, they periodically serve as headquarters for various local militias.

HLLT/Tripoli Airport has been more or less completely closed since mid-2014, when at least 90% of the airport’s facilities were destroyed in fighting between local militias. Since then, international flights to and from Tripoli have been using HLLM/Mitiga instead. Technically, HLLT/Tripoli is now only available for VIP, emergency and ambulance flights; but in reality, it should be avoided at all costs.

HLLM/Mitiga Airport is the old military airfield, which is now being used for civilian traffic, since the closure of HLLT/Tripoli. However, the airport has been plagued by violence over the past few years, and has been forced to close a number of times.

In Jan 2018, heavy clashes across the city left at least twenty people dead and forced Mitiga airport to close for five days, from Jan 15-20. Gunfire at the airport damaged multiple aircraft, including a few A319s and at least one A330:

There was a similar incident back in Oct 2017, when a Libyan Airlines A330 at Mitiga airport was hit by gunfire during an exchange of fire between local militia in the district directly south of the airport:

 

HLLL/Tripoli FIR A number of countries already have blanket warnings in place against operating to Libya, and they all say pretty much the same thing: avoid the entire country – don’t land at any airport, don’t even overfly.

So we suggest you ignore whatever gets pumped out on the HLLL FIR Notams about the country’s main international airports being “AVAILABLE H24 FOR INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS AND EN-ROUTE DIVERSIONS”. If you absolutely have to overfly the airspace, Libya has updated their requirements for transit of their FIR, and have published a mandatory routing scheme. You can read that in full by clicking here.

What is more interesting, is the state guidance they issued back in Feb 2017, which shows those areas that they believe to be active Conflict Zones. While we list the entire country as Level 1 – Avoid” at safeairspace.net, it is nonetheless noteworthy as this type of notification from a ‘Conflict Zone state’ is rare.

The 3 areas with coordinates, are:

Area 1:- 3116N01610E 3108N01707E 3030N01700E 3042N01605E
Area 2:- 3251N02240E 3243N02246E 3239N02218E 3247N02216E
Area 3:- 3212N02002E 3209N02007E 3157N01953E 3154N02005E (this has been removed as of Feb 2018, but we’ll leave it here)

These correspond to sites at Sirte, Benghazi, and Derna, left to  right below, with Sirte being the largest.

 

Operators are required to use IFBP while in the Libya FIR. If unable to maintain communication , they’d like you to call the controllers direct at +218215632331. The secondary number is +218213619614.

More:

A319, A330 hit by gunfire at Tripoli

Heavy clashes broke out in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Jan 15, leaving at least twenty people dead and forcing HLLM/Mitiga airport to close for five days, re-opening again on Jan 20.

Gunfire at the airport damaged multiple aircraft, including a few A319s and at least one A330.

Here are some photos of some of the damage:

 

Both airports in Tripoli are focal points for fighting. Given their strategic value, they periodically serve as headquarters for various local militias.

HLLT/Tripoli has been more or less completely closed since mid-2014, when at least 90% of the airport’s facilities were destroyed in fighting between local militias. Since then, international flights to and from Tripoli have been using HLLM/Mitiga instead. Technically, HLLT/Tripoli is now only available for VIP, emergency and ambulance flights; but in reality, it should be avoided at all costs.

HLLM/Mitiga is the old military airfield, which is now being used for civilian traffic, since the closure of HLLT/Tripoli. However, the airport has been plagued by violence over the past few years, and has been forced to close a number of times.

Back in July 2017, we reported on the intense fighting that took place at Mitiga airport where 5 people were killed and 32 injured, and then on 19 Oct 2017, a Libyan Airlines A330 at the airport was hit by gunfire during an exchange of fire between local militia in the district directly south of the airport.

A number of countries already have blanket warnings in place against operating to Libya, and they all say pretty much the same thing: avoid the entire country – don’t land at any airport, don’t even overfly.

So we suggest you ignore whatever gets pumped out on the HLLL FIR Notams about airports being “AVAILABLE H24 FOR INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS AND EN-ROUTE DIVERSIONS”. (You can read that nonsense in full by clicking here.)

Libya remains categorised as a Level One country (Do Not Fly) at safeairspace.net


					
		

Fighting at Tripoli Airport, 5 killed

Update Jan 21: Heavy clashes broke out in the Libyan capital Tripoli on Jan 15, leaving at least twenty people dead and forcing the airport to close for five days, re-opening again on Jan 20. Gunfire at Mitiga Airport damaged multiple aircraft, including a few A319s and at least one A330.

July 5, 2017 – HLLM/Tripoli Mitiga : Intense fighting at the Airport yesterday, with 5 people killed and 32 injured. The fighting is ongoing between rival members of the Buni Brigade militia, which controls the airport terminal building. It is understood that there had been a falling out over the distribution of the income the militia earns from goods and passengers passing through the terminal.

Operations were switched to Mitiga from HLLT/Tripoli International in 2014, after that airport was severely damaged in the heavy clashes that broke out across the capital in mid-2014 and closed to all operations.

Also yesterday, July 4th, the first flight in three years to land at HLLT/Tripoli International arrived from Addis Ababa, which was a non-scheduled flight operated by Libyan Arab Airlines. There is no indication yet that HLLT is open again for regular traffic.

Libya remains categorised as a Level One country (Do Not Fly) at safeairspace.net

 

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