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Published: Sunday July 6, 2014 MYT 9:40:02 PM
Updated: Sunday July 6, 2014 MYT 9:40:02 PM

Three European engineers believed kidnapped in Libya - officials

TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Three Europeans working for an Italian construction company have probably been kidnapped in Libya, officials from the Libyan and Italian governments said on Sunday.

Libya has seen a rise in kidnappings of diplomats, foreigners and Libyans, with a fractious government and parliament unable to control militias who helped oust Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

A car used by Italian, Macedonian and Bosnian engineers was found abandoned in the town of Zuwara, west of the capital Tripoli, an official in the local town council told Reuters.

"They are missing and we suspect they have been kidnapped," said the official, without giving further details.

A spokesman for the Italian Foreign Ministry named the missing Italian as Marco Vallisa, an employee of Piacentini Costruzioni SpA based in northern Italy, and said the ministry "presumes him to have been kidnapped".

The spokesman declined to give details about the other two missing men.

(Reporting by Ahmed Elumami and Gavin Jones; editing by Ralph Boulton)

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