Intelligence authorities from the United States have warned the global community the aeroplanes now reported missing since August when Islamic militants overtook Libya's international airport in Tripoli could be used to stage 9/11-style terrorist attacks in the region.
An unidentified official quoted by the Washington Free Beacon said they are especially concerned over the missing 11 aeroplanes because it occurred a mere three weeks before the 13th anniversary of 9/11 attacks.
At the same time, those days mark the second anniversary of the Libyan terrorist attack on the US diplomatic compound in Benghazi.
"There are a number of commercial airliners in Libya that are missing," the official said. "We found out on September 11 what can happen with hijacked planes."
Abderrahmane Mekkaoui, a Moroccan military expert, told Al Jazeera television it was the Islamic group Masked Men Brigade that took the planes, and that he strongly believes a number of them, if not all, would be used to stage attacks on the Maghreb state.
Sebastian Gorka, a counterterrorism expert, said the planes could be used to strike the oil fields of Saudi Arabia or North Africa.
A report by online news Web site Magharebia said joint military exercises, in co-ordination with US naval forces stationed in the Mediterranean and Italy, have begun which include simulations activities that teach how to intercept a passenger or military plane being piloted by terrorists.
It said the air forces of Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania, Spain, France, Portugal, Italy and Malta are expected to participate in the upcoming exercise.
To date, US intelligence agencies continue to locate all the missing aircraft which were owned by two Libyan state-owned airline companies.
Closed since mid-July, Tripoli airport and at least seven aircraft have been reported heavily damaged during the fighting that began in the same month.
The missing 11 aircraft were reportedly taken, following the takeover of Tripoli International Airport in late August by Libyan Dawn.
The Sept 11, 2001 attacks were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks launched on the US by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda. The attacks killed 3,000 people and left $10 billion damages in property and infrastructure.