Libyan embassy hands Greeks secret arsenal

Libyan diplomats have surrendered dozens of weapons and explosives to Greek police after they were found in the grounds of its embassy in Athens.

Greek police said the cache included 30 handguns, two sub-machine guns, 33lbs of plastic explosives, detonators, two hand grenades, more than 1,200 rounds of ammunition, silencers and wire-tapping equipment.

An official said the weaponry may have been amassed by the previous Libyan regime, headed by Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi, although it was not clear when it was brought to Greece.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“It was found inside the embassy grounds,” the official said. “When the diplomats who replaced the old embassy staff located the weaponry they notified the new Libyan government, which gave instructions for the arms to be handed to the Greek police.”

Greece’s anti-terrorist squad took delivery of the cache, and is investigating whether or not the firearms have been used in illegal acts. Police said some of the weapons were near-military grade and very dangerous, and had most probably been brought into Greece illegally.

Greece and Libya enjoyed good relations under Gaddafi, who ruled from 1969 until killed by rebels last October.