EU Punishes Violators of Libya’s Arms Embargo

  • Nevertheless, some countries, companies, and individuals have continued to openly intervene in the Libyan Civil War.
  • Companies violating Libya's arms embargo belong to Turkey, Jordan, and Kazakhstan.
  • All diplomatic efforts to end the civil war in Libya have so far been unsuccessful.

Germany, France, and Italy have stepped up pressure on violators of the Libyan arms embargo. The three had previously threatened to punish violators of the embargo in mid-July, on the sidelines of an EU summit in Brussels. A list of Turkish, UAE, and Jordanian companies has been compiled.

The Second Libyan Civil War is an ongoing conflict among rival factions seeking control of Libya. The conflict is mostly between the House of Representatives, elected in 2014 with a low turnout, relocated to Tobruk, which appointed Marshal Khalifa Haftar as commander-in-chief of the Libyan National Army with the mission of restoring its sovereignty over the whole of Libyan territory, and the Government of National Accord, led by Fayez al-Sarraj, based in the capital Tripoli and established after failed military coups and the relocation of the House of Representatives to Tobruk.

The companies are said to be involved in transporting weapons to Libya, and penalties are set for violators. Nevertheless, some countries have continued to openly intervene in the Libyan Civil War.

These companies and individuals are accused of providing weapons, ships, planes, and other means of transport to move weapons in to Libya. The shipment of weapons to Libya is, in fact, a violation of the UN arms embargo resolution. The resolution was adopted in 2011, after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

Violators of the Libyan Arms Embargo

The German television network News Service reported on Monday that companies violating Libya’s arms embargo belong to Turkey, Jordan, and Kazakhstan, citing a report by the German news agency and EU diplomats. In addition, two Libyan nationals are said to be subject to the sanctions.

The list of violators of Libya’s arms embargo is expected to be submitted to the EU Council of Ministers for consideration and approval after the end of the summer holidays. Once approved, sanctions and penalties will be imposed on these companies.

The report states that the assets of these companies will be frozen in the European Union, and in addition, companies from EU member states will be barred from doing business with these companies.

Continued Export of Weapons to Libya

Libya has been facing a civil war since 2011. While Turkey supports the military forces of the Government of National Accord in Tripoli, General Khalifa Haftar enjoys the support of countries such as Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Russia.

All diplomatic efforts to end the civil war in Libya have so far been unsuccessful. The latest of these efforts go back to the Libyan Conference held in Berlin in January.

United Nations Security Council Resolution 1970 was a measure adopted unanimously by the UN Security Council on 26 February 2011. It condemned the use of lethal force by the government of Muammar Gaddafi against protesters participating in the Libyan Civil War, and imposed a series of international sanctions in response.

The call for Germany, France, and Italy to end the bloody Libyan conflict stems from their policy of controlling the number of illegal immigrants trying to reach Europe via Mediterranean waters due to the war in Libya. In a recent report, the United Nations accused Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and Jordan of sending troops and sending weapons to Libya.

At a conference in Berlin in January, at least two countries— Turkey and the United Arab Emirates— expressed their readiness to suspend arms exports to Libya. However, the two countries have continued to carry weapons and intervene in Libya’s civil war in recent months.

France, for example, has stated that a Turkish-owned warship has blocked the inspection of a ship suspected of carrying weapons by the French navy. France has claimed that the Turkish warship even activated its firing system radar to prevent the ship from being inspected by the French navy.

From a military point of view, such an action is taken only when the ship of the opposing force is in an offensive state. France has described Turkey’s move as a “highly provocative move,” and has referred the matter to a NATO summit.

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Benedict Kasigara

I have been working as a freelance editor/writer since 2006. My specialist subject is film and television having worked for over 10 years from 2005 during which time I was the editor of the BFI Film and Television.

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