Libya FM calls on UN for support as chaos continues
Militias throughout Libya have been fighting for power and control over the country's territory and resources since the oust of Moammar Gaddafi in 2011 (File Archive/AFP)
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Libyan leadership called on the United Nations late Thursday to assist the country's security forces in their effort to restore order in what has the potential to turn into a failed state, according to Agence France Presse.
Libyan Foreign Minister Mohamed Abdelaziz urged the UN Security Council Thursday to provide support, namely in the form of experts to train the country's security forces, in order to resolve chaos in the north African country.
"We are not asking for military intervention," said Abdelaziz, as reported by AFP. "We are asking for a team from the UN specialized in the field of security."
"Should Libya become a failed state, kidnapped by radical groups and warlords, the consequences would be far-reaching and perhaps beyond control," Abdelaziz added.
Libya has been enveloped in violence and chaos for months as armed militias who supported the oust of former dictator Moammar Gaddafi continue to fight with each other as well as with the weak central government in Tripoli for power and territory control.
In recent days, Islamist fighters have launched daily attacks on Tripoli's international airport in an effort to oust an anti-Islamist group, the Zintan, from controlling the transportation hub.
In previous months, other brigades and groups took over full control of the country's oil fields in the east, even successfully sending the country's vital export to another country without the central government's approval. More than 30 billion dollars in revenue have been lost over a 11 month period due to Tripoli's lack of control over the country's east.
Abdelaziz thus increased the urgency of UN support Thursday, warning that the country could become a "hub for attracting extremists, [feeding radicalism and the arms flow in the region, and further afield in Syria]," reported AFP.
"Don't you think that such patterns that are indicative of heading towards a failed state would justify a stronger, more strategic engagement from the Security Council?" he added.
The Security Council is expected to issue a response and statement on Libya later, but it is not yet clear from the AFP report when that statement will be released precisely.