News / Africa

Tuareg Leaders in Niger and Mali Urge Tuareg in Libya to Work With NTC

A nomad from the famed Tuareg tribe of the Sahara Desert brings his herd for vaccination to a team of US special forces handing out aid near the town of Gao in northeastern Mali. (File Photo)
A nomad from the famed Tuareg tribe of the Sahara Desert brings his herd for vaccination to a team of US special forces handing out aid near the town of Gao in northeastern Mali. (File Photo)

Tuareg leaders in Niger and Mali are urging Tuareg fighters in Libya to abandon Moammar Gadhafi and work with the country's new leaders.

The change of power in Libya could further destabilize Africa's Sahelian region, where al-Qaida affiliated terrorists are already active.

Tuareg legislators from Mali and Niger say Libya's interim council has promised not to target Tuareg members of the Gadhafi army.

By urging those fighters to join Libya's new leaders, Sahelian governments are hoping to avoid a mass movement south that would worsen conditions in an already food-insecure region and could benefit al-Qaida affiliated terrorists.

Despite assurances from Libya's new leaders, the head of Niger and Mali's Tuareg Contact Group, Ibrahim Ag Mohamed Assaleh, says Africans in Libya still face the threat of reprisals over their past support for Colonel Gadhafi.

Assaleh says Tuareg leaders in Niger and Mali do not doubt their partners in Libya's National Transitional Council, but war is war. There are always things that slip away, he says, uncontrollable elements when there are so many things going on. There are still two or three weeks needed to put everything in order, Assaleh says, but Sahelian Tuaregs are confident in the future.

Thousands of Tuaregs from Niger and Mali settled in Libya during Gadhafi's rule. Many worked as migrant labor. Some joined his military. As the Gadhafi regime crumbled, some Tuareg troops fled Libya. Malian parliamentarian Assaleh says Tuareg leaders are working to ensure their safe return.

Assaleh says some of those Tuareg troops retreated to Mali and Niger, and Tuareg leaders are asking them to return to their barracks in Libya to avoid having the conflict spill across Libya's borders into the Sahel.

Mohamed Anacko heads Niger's Agadez Regional Council as is the vice president of the bi-national Contact Group.

Anacko says Niger and Mali are very fragile states that can not absorb the influx of hundreds of thousands of people. So the Contact Group is working with Libya's new leaders to create trust with Tuareg fighters from the former regime so those fighters do not return to Niger and Mali with their weapons.

Anacko says it is the hope of the Contact Group that, in the coming days, Niger will be able to negotiate the safe return of Tuareg soldiers to Libya.

Anacko's Agadez region is one of the most affected by both the collapse of the Gadhafi regime and the growth of Sahelian terrorism. Niger's government says the area is already hosting nearly 80,000 migrants who fled Libya.

Security forces in Niger recovered detonators, more than 600 kilograms of semtex explosives and $90,000 in cash during a shoot out with suspected terrorists in June.

Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou says the arms came from Libya and were intended for al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, which is responsible for a string of kidnappings and ambushes across the Sahel.

Regional concern about the spread of terrorism is growing with Nigeria's government saying those responsible for last month's bombing of United Nations headquarters in the capital met with al-Qaida-affiliated terrorists in Somalia.

You May Like

Photogallery Pistorius Sentenced, Taken to Prison

Pistorius, convicted of culpable homicide in shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, will likely serve about 10 months of five-year sentence, before completing it under house arrest More

UN to Aid Central Africa in Polio Vaccinations

Synchronized vaccinations will be conducted after Cameroon reports a fifth case of the wild polio virus in its territory More

WHO: Ebola Vaccine May Be in Use by Jan.

WHO assistant director Dr. Marie Paule Kieny says clinical trials of Ebola vaccines are underway or planned in Europe, US and Africa 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.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid