Libya swears in new defense minister

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Libya’s Congress has sworn in a new defense minister despite a continued show of force by gunmen carrying out near-daily attacks on security forces.

Congress on Monday approved Abdullah al-Thani as the country’s military chief.

He replaces Mohammed Al-Barghathi, who resigned following May raids by militias on ministries in the capital, Tripoli, to pressure lawmakers to pass a contentious bill.

Most recently on Sunday, Prime Minister Ali Zidan said armed men stormed a military barracks west of Tripoli and looted some of the equipment.

Al-Thani was known to have been detained several times under Moamar Gadhafi because of his brother’s criticism of Libya’s intervention in the internal affairs of neighboring Chad.

Al-Thani’s brother, who fled Libya under Gadhafi, was a pilot in the Air Force.

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