Benghazi’s Benina airport will not reopen until it is ready: General Manager

By Sami Zaptia.

London, 14 October 2020:

Abdalla Al-Shafee, the General Manager of Benghazi’s Benina airport, today denied widely circulated reports that the airport will commence flights with Tripoli on Friday.

Al-Shafee said the Anti-Coronavirus Committee had set 17 preconditions that needed to be met before the airport can resume operations.

He said there is a list of issues that need to be resolved, headed by the need for a specialized disinfection company that can disinfect the airport, passengers, and baggage – before operations can resume.

Other unresolved issues included broken security machines, missing spare parts, unpaid service (16 months) and catering staff (33 months), lack of vehicles, buses, forklifts, and fuel. There is also an issue with the airliners unwilling to carry just half the passengers, as requested by the Anti-Coronavirus Committee.

In view of all this, he admitted that in normal circumstances, the airport should not reopen.

Al-Shafee said he very much sympathized with citizens who needed the airport to reopen for health tourism as well as other reasons, however, in view of the pandemic, he hoped the public understood the situation.

‘‘We are not against reopening the airport, but there are reasons preventing this. I am unable to set a date for reopening, but when all the needs are met we will reopen as soon as possible’’, he concluded.


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