News / Africa

    UN Envoy: Libya Key Source for Illicit Arms, Fueling Conflicts

    FILE - A chemical container is seen in an unguarded storage facility in the desert, some 62 miles (100 kilometers) south of Sirte, Libya.
    FILE - A chemical container is seen in an unguarded storage facility in the desert, some 62 miles (100 kilometers) south of Sirte, Libya.
    Reuters
    Libya has become a primary source of illicit weapons, including shoulder-fired missiles, which have been trafficked to at least 14 countries and are fueling conflicts on several continents, Rwanda's U.N. envoy said on Monday.
          
    Rwandan Ambassador Eugene Gasana, chair of the U.N. Security Council's Libya sanctions committee, briefed the 15-member council on the final report of the independent panel of experts who monitor violations of the world body's sanctions regime.
     
    A U.N. arms embargo was imposed on Libya at the start of an uprising in 2011 that ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi. The fragile government is struggling to rein in dozens of militias that helped oust Gadhafi and now defy state authority.
          
    “The panel noted that the control of non-state armed actors over the majority of stockpiles in Libya as well as ineffective border control systems remained primary obstacles to countering proliferation and that Libya had become a primary source of illicit weapons, including MANPADs,” Gasana told the council.
          
    MANPADs are man-portable air defense systems.
     
    “The panel furthermore noted that investigations relating to transfers to 14 countries reflected a highly diversified range of trafficking dynamics; and that trafficking from Libya was fueling conflict and insecurity - including terrorism - on several continents,” he continued.
          
    Libya has been trying to rebuild its army since Gadhafi's overthrow, but analysts say it is not yet a match for battle-hardened militias that fought in the eight-month uprising that toppled him.
     
    The rebels have seized three ports and partly control a fourth in Libya, which is a member of OPEC. Officials said on Monday that Libya's parliament has ordered a special force to be sent within one week to “liberate” all rebel-held ports.
     
    Travel violations
          
    A year ago the U.N. Security Council made it easier for Libya to obtain non-lethal equipment, such as bulletproof vests and armored cars, but expressed concern over the spread of weapons from the country to nearby states.
          
    It urged the Libyan government at that time to improve its monitoring of arms and related materiel that is supplied, sold or transferred to the government - with the approval of the U.N. sanctions committee that oversees the arms embargo.
          
    The U.N. experts expressed concern in their report about violations of the arms embargo by “non-notified” deliveries of arms to government forces and transfers of weapons to the private market, Gasana said.
          
    Libya's U.N. Ambassador, Ibrahim Dabbashi, told the Security Council that “any request for approval for exporting weapons to Libya that is not done via the Libyan mission at the U.N. or with the knowledge of this mission would be considered a request from a party that does not belong to the Libyan government.”
          
    “The exporting party shall bear the responsibility for that before the Security Council,” he said.
          
    Gasana said the panel of U.N. experts also found that many countries lacked the legislative capacity to implement asset freezes on individuals and entities blacklisted by the U.N. Security Council.
     
    “One instance resulted in the dissipation of almost $2 million in funds that should have been frozen,” Gasana said.
          
    The panel reported that Gadhafi's daughter Aisha and son Mohammed had violated a U.N. travel ban by traveling from Algeria to Oman a year ago. Oman said it had granted asylum to them and several other family members.

    You May Like

    Leaving Scalia Replacement to 2017 Would Mean Unusually Long Vacancy

    History of high court shows Obama not in unique situation during final year of presidency

    US Fact Checkers Debunk Some Republican Candidate Claims 

    Slim evidence for several claims made by Republican presidential candidates at their last debate ahead of next Saturday's key nominating election in South Carolina

    Uganda Presidential Debate a Small Victory for Democracy

    In homes and bars across country, Ugandans were fixated on their screens as eight political candidates running for president took part in national debate

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

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Ugandai
    X
    Serginho Roosblad
    February 12, 2016 9:29 PM
    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video Refugees in Kenya Vie to Compete in Rio Olympics

    In Kenya, refugees from other African nations are training at a special camp and competing for a limited number of slots in this year's Rio Olympics under the flag of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Ngong, this is a first in Olympic history.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.