Se­cu­rity Coun­cil urges coun­tries to stick to Libya arms em­bargo

The Daily Star (Lebanon) - - FRONT PAGE -

UNITED NA­TIONS: The United Na­tions Se­cu­rity Coun­cil called on all coun­tries Mon­day to im­ple­ment an arms em­bargo on Libya and to stay out of the con­flict af­ter U.N. sanc­tions mon­i­tors ac­cused Jor­dan, the United Arab Emi­rates and Tur­key of re­peated vi­o­la­tions.

The 15-mem­ber coun­cil urged all states “not to in­ter­vene in the con­flict or to take mea­sures that would ex­ac­er­bate the con­flict” and ex­pressed con­cern at “the grow­ing in­volve­ment of mer­ce­nar­ies.” Such state­ments are agreed by con­sen­sus.

The coun­cil “called for full com­pli­ance with the arms em­bargo,” but any ac­tion over re­ported sanc­tions vi­o­la­tions is un­likely, diplo­mats said.

Jor­dan, the United Arab Emi­rates and Tur­key have re­peat­edly vi­o­lated an arms em­bargo on Libya and it is “highly prob­a­ble” that a for­eign at­tack air­craft is re­spon­si­ble for a deadly strike on a mi­grant de­ten­tion cen­ter, U.N. ex­perts mon­i­tor­ing the im­ple­men­ta­tion of sanc­tions on Libya re­ported last month.

The U.N. mis­sions of Jor­dan and Tur­key did not im­me­di­ately re­spond to a Reuters re­quest for com­ment at the time on the ac­cu­sa­tions. The UAE said it was “firmly com­mit­ted to com­ply­ing with its obli­ga­tions un­der the Libya sanc­tions regime and all rel­e­vant Se­cu­rity Coun­cil res­o­lu­tions.”

“The trans­fers [of mil­i­tary ma­te­rial] to Libya were re­peated and some­times bla­tant with scant re­gard be­ing paid to com­pli­ance with the sanc­tions mea­sures,” the in­de­pen­dent U.N. ex­perts wrote in the con­fi­den­tial report, due to be pub­lished this month.

Libya de­scended into chaos af­ter an up­ris­ing that over­threw leader Moam­mar Gad­hafi in 2011.

Thou­sands of peo­ple have been killed in spo­radic fight­ing since 2014 be­tween fac­tions in the east and west. The vi­o­lence has al­lowed mil­i­tants and mi­grant smug­glers to flour­ish, hit Libya’s oil in­dus­try and di­vided the coun­try’s key in­sti­tu­tions.

Ear­lier this year com­man­der Khal­ifa Haf­tar’s self-styled Libyan Na­tional Army launched an of­fen­sive against the in­ter­na­tion­ally rec­og­nized Gov­ern­ment of Na­tional Ac­cord and its armed forces in Tripoli. But the war has reached an im­passe.

The U.N. ex­perts ac­cuse Jor­dan and the UAE of sup­ply­ing mil­i­tary ma­te­rial to Haf­tar’s forces, which they said then prompted the GNA to ask Tur­key for help.

Haf­tar is also backed by Egypt and more re­cently Rus­sian mer­ce­nar­ies, ac­cord­ing to diplo­mats and Tripoli of­fi­cials. The LNA de­nies it has for­eign back­ing. The United States has pushed Haf­tar to end his of­fen­sive. –

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