Italy forced to deny reports of military intervention as chaos throws elections into doubt

A mass jailbreak by 400 prisoners has added to the chaos of nine days of militia fighting in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, throwing into doubt French-led plans to hold elections later this year and forcing the Italian government to deny it would sanction a military intervention to restore order.

The prisoners, reportedly terrified by fighting raging around them, forced their way past guards and broke down doors to escape the Ain Zara prison, flooding into a city already traumatised by the worst street fighting seen in four years.

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