UNSC authorizes EU’s Operation Sophia to enforce arms embargo on Libya

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Comments Off on UNSC authorizes EU’s Operation Sophia to enforce arms embargo on Libya

The UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution authorizing the European Union’s naval force “Operation Sophia” to enforce arms embargo on Libya.

The French-led Council adopted this evening resolution 2292 condemning the flows of arms and related materiel transferred to or from Libya in violation of the arms embargo, including to the so-called Islamic State (IS) and other terrorist groups in the country.

The Council members urged Member States to combat by all means, in accordance with their obligations under the UN Charter and other obligations under international law, including international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.

The Britain-drafted resolution authorizes for a period 12-months from today, Member States, acting nationally or through regional organizations, with appropriate consultations with the Government of National Accord (GNA), to inspect without undue delay on the high seas off the coast of Libya, vessels bound to or from Libya which they have reasonable grounds to believe are carrying arms or related materiel to or from Libya.

Expressing deep concern at the threat posed by unsecured arms and ammunition in Libya and their proliferation, which undermines stability in Libya and the region, the 15-member body affirms that the authorizations provided in this resolution apply only with respect to the smuggling of illegal arms and related materiel on the high seas off the coast of Libya and shall not affect the rights or obligations or responsibilities of Member States under international law.

Prior to the vote, the President of the Council Ambassador Francois Delattre told the press that this resolution, has the potential to be “a game changer” for Libya.

With this resolution, the French Official said, finally they will have the means to enforce the arms embargo in Libya. In doing so, he added, the Council would be better equipped to fight against IS by stopping the flow of arms that feeds the instability in this country.

That said, the European Ambassador said they will reinforce the GNA and promote the unity of the country which is a number one priority.

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