Libya government wants to integrate ex-fighters

Agence France Presse

Published — Tuesday 12 February 2013

Last update 12 February 2013 7:55 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A
PARIS: Top Libyan and Western officials on Tuesday agreed on a plan to improve security following the 2011 ouster of Muammar Qaddafi, including tighter borders, disarming former fighters and training troops.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius was joined for the talks by his Libyan counterpart Mohamed Abdulaziz and other top Libyan officials as well as the foreign ministers of Britain, Italy, Denmark, Turkey and Malta.
“Much has already been achieved but issues remain, including border security, weapons, the rule of law, human rights, etc,” Fabius said.
He said international support for the Libyans came in many forms including “the rapid deployment of European experts to train Libyan security forces and police and help to rebuild the army, navy and air force.”
Diplomatic sources said the talks were the result of serious concerns over Libyan security, including over the flood of weapons from Qaddafi’s storage depots across the region since his regime’s demise.
Rebels who took control of Mali last year are among those believed to have benefited from the looting of Qaddafi’s vast weapons storehouses.
“The security of North Africa is an integral part of the security of the Mediterranean as a whole,” Libyan Foreign Minister Abdulaziz said, pointing out that his country’s borders stretched over 6,000 kilometers (3,750 miles).
“Organized crime is very active, terrorism is very active,” he said, calling for “a united front against terrorism.”
A statement issued after the talks said an EU mission to help better border management would be deployed by June.
Tripoli has pledged to reform its judiciary, reform the prison system and promote national reconciliation through truth-seeking processes and trying to identify and locate missing persons.
Several Western governments have been alarmed at the deteriorating security situation in Libya’s second city Benghazi and many ordered their nationals to evacuate last month citing fears of terrorist attacks to avenge France’s military intervention in Mali to rout rebels in the vast arid north.
Abdulaziz had earlier said a spillover from Mali’s crisis could undermine security in Libya with weapons and foreign fighters flowing back to the country.
He said on Tuesday that a government team was in the eastern city last week to hear local grievances and improve things, saying: “We are really trying to control the situation.
“Some uncontrolled elements are trying to exploit the situation,” he added.
Benghazi is cradle of the uprising that toppled dictator Muammar Qaddafi in 2011 but also the city where a US ambassador was killed in an attack in September.
Abdulaziz said the situation in Benghazi was a legacy of Qaddafi’s rule.
“Benghazi and the east were very much marginalized. The same paradox exists in the south that also produced some kind of extremism.”

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: At the weekly Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Vice Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Prince Mohammed bin Naif briefed the Cabinet on the talks held by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman with President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi of Yemen,...
JEDDAH: Private schools have been devising new ways to raise money from parents to circumvent the Education Ministry’s cap on fee increases, a local publication reported here recently.Schools now charge for services that do not require the ministry’s...
JEDDAH: Vice Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, Minister of Interior and Chairman of the Supreme Haj Committee Prince Mohammed bin Naif has approved the general plan for implementation of Civil Defense works in emergency cases during the current Haj...
RIYADH: The government has shut down a cosmetics factory in Riyadh for using undisclosed raw materials and unhygienic process at its production facility.A team from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, during a routine inspection, found the plant u...
RIYADH: Recruitment offices here have decided to stop hiring Bangladeshi workers because they claim that a supply crunch has raised costs.Ibrahim Al-Megheimish, a recruitment expert, said that there are too few Bangladeshi workers seeking employment,...
RIYADH: As many as 200 students have enrolled into different courses at the Riyadh-based Saudi Aviation Flight Academy (SAFA) with 70 percent of them being Saudi nationals, said Saleem Bava, head of marketing and admission at SAFA.SAFA offers a mix o...

Stay Connected