Libya's UN-backed Interior Minister Fathi Bashaga speaks at a press conference in Tripoli, Libya, on Feb. 23, 2020. Fathi Bashaga on Sunday said that armed groups obstruct and extort security services in the capital Tripoli. (Photo by Hamza Turkia/Xinhua)
TRIPOLI, Feb. 23 (Xinhua) -- Libya's UN-backed Interior Minister Fathi Bashaga on Sunday said that armed groups obstruct and extort security services in the capital Tripoli.
"Militias in Tripoli attack institutions and obstruct the government, using their powers being part of security agencies. They do not answer to the law or the instructions of the Attorney General," Bashaga told a press conference in the capital Tripoli.
This is an act that can be described as "organized crime," and those who commit this crime will be pursued, the minister said.
"It is unfortunate that a security service is extorted by some militias. A militia captured Naji al-Zubi, a competent officer of the Tripoli Security Directorate," Bashaga said.
Local media said that al-Zubi has been captured by a militia in Tripoli, accusing him of treason and working for the rival eastern-based army, which is engaged in a deadly armed conflict against the UN-backed government over control of Tripoli.
The minister also pointed out that there is significant financial corruption in his ministry worth more than 710 million U.S. dollars.