News / Africa

Libya Opposition Urges Quick Release of Frozen Assets

Libyan rebel leader and senior member of Libya's National Transitional Council (NTC) Mahmoud Jibril, speaks during a joint news conference with Turkey's FM Ahmet Davutoglu (R) in Istanbul, August 26, 2011
Libyan rebel leader and senior member of Libya's National Transitional Council (NTC) Mahmoud Jibril, speaks during a joint news conference with Turkey's FM Ahmet Davutoglu (R) in Istanbul, August 26, 2011
TEXT SIZE - +

The leader of Libya's opposition coalition, Mahmoud Jibril, has warned that the country could face a crisis unless the international community acts quickly to release the estimated $150 billion in assets frozen by United Nations sanctions. Jibril made the appeal in Istanbul, after a meeting with Turkey's foreign minister.

The head of Libya's Transitional National Council (TNC), Mahmoud Jibril, met Friday with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The talks focused on establishing international recognition of the rebel leadership and the release of billions of dollars in Libyan assets frozen under U.N. sanctions. Jibril announced the new leaders hope to take the Libyan seat at the United Nations next month. But for the rebel leader, money is the key priority.

He says all the people who fought will go back home - that there are martyrs and wounded, all of whom have families. He says there also are civil servants who must be paid. He says it is important that Libyans return to a normal way of life, and it is for that reason that those assets must be released. He says if that does not happen, there could be a crisis of legitimacy.

Jibril stressed that the funds will be vital for establishing a new army and police force. He says maintaining security and stability is a particular concern of the international community. Observers say a lawless Libya could become a base for groups linked to al-Qaida. But Jibril says the funds also are needed to help in the reconciliation process.

He says the TNC would like to see support moving even into areas under the control of Moammar Gadhafi's forces, so the needs of those people can also be met. He says that way, they can feel they are part of the Libyan people as a whole.

Foreign Minister Davutoglu pledged Turkey's complete support to Libya's new leaders, saying recognition of their flag, the release of financial assets and international recognition are the three main pillars of international legitimacy, and they must now be fulfilled.

Davutoglu announced they will be expediting the release of $200 million in credit on top of $100 million in aid already given to the TNC. The Turkish foreign minister also said they are looking to arrange direct flights to Benghazi, the center of the Libyan opposition, ahead of an Islamic holiday next week.  International relations expert Soli Ozel says Turkey is looking after its investments.

"The most important thing for Turkey now is to be able to collect $17 billion [in] outstanding debts and make sure when Libya is rebuilt that Turkish contractors are going to get their fare share," said Ozel. "But I think to the extent that Turkey can help with institution-building they will be happy to do it and are capable to help out on that."

Turkey is already helping in the training of both the police and army in Afghanistan. Offering similar assistance to Libya was reportedly discussed in Friday's meeting, as well as the reconstruction of Libya. Ankara does appear well placed when the scramble for Libyan contracts begins.

Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Abuja Blast Impacts Lives, Livelihoods

Officials say they are looking at ways to help bombing victims and boosting security More

Cambodia Technology Adviser Criticizes Cybercrime Draft Law

Phu Leewood says current criminal code can be used to prosecute offenders and that there is no need for a separate law More

Photogallery A Year Later, Boston Remembers Deadly Marathon Bombings

City pauses to honor victims and salute emergency workers who came to their assistance in frantic moments after blasts More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid