NATO could support EU in enforcing Libya arms embargo- Stoltenberg

Whatapp News

European union

Brussels – NATO could do more to support the Union’s Operation Sophia in enforcing a UN arms embargo against , alliance chief Jens Stoltenberg told EU lawmakers on Tuesday.

In recent days, key international actors in Libya’s internal conflict agreed to a set of measures aimed at bringing peace to the northern African country.

As part of that effort, EU foreign ministers decided on Monday to revamp the bloc’s Mediterranean Sea mission to focus purely on upholding the UN arms embargo.

“NATO provides support to Operation Sophia.

“And actually we could do more to provide support if that is requested or called for by the European Union, for instance to help to implement the arms embargo against Libya,’’ Stoltenberg said.

Operation Sophia was launched in 2015 with the dual task of stopping in the Mediterranean and enforcing the UN arms embargo on Libya.

It also rescued thousands of migrants at sea.

Naval patrols under Operation Sophia were suspended last year due to an EU dispute over what to do with the rescued migrants, but the mission still trains the Libyan coast guard.

In 2016, NATO agreed to provide reconnaissance and logistical assistance for the Operation Sophia, including ships and maritime patrol aircraft.

Information sharing continues under the umbrella of its Operation Sea Guardian.

Libya has been in turmoil since the 2011 overthrow of Dictator Moamer Gaddafi and has become a battleground for rival proxy forces.

The issue is seen as key to EU security, after the country became a gateway for migrants trying to reach Europe.