By Hadi Fornaji
Tripoli, 7 November:
The minister for international security strategy at the British Ministry of Defence, Dr Andrew Murrison, told Libya . . .[restrict]Herald today that Libya had been “transformed” by the revolution.
Speaking after a Remembrance Day service at the Commonwealth Cemetery in Tripoli, Murrison said: “I’m highly impressed by what I’ve seen so far. Libya is a country the UK should be partnering.” He added that he was also “impressed by the genuine warmth towards the UK” which, he said, is reciprocated.
Murrison said that the UK should put a lot of effort into assisting the country, in areas where help is most needed. He said that training in various sectors was high on the list of what the UK was offering Libya. He added, however, that it was up to Libya to state its requirements in the rebuilding of the country.
During the service Murrison told the congregation that it was particularly poignant to be marking Remembrance Day, an annual day of remembrance for those who lost their lives in the two World Wars and recent conflicts, in Libya.
“In the Second World War Libyans stood side by side with British and Commonwealth Armed Forces in the fight against Fascism and dictatorship,” he said. “The city of Tobruk will forever be remembered by Commonwealth soldiers who fought in the North Africa Campaign. We are here today to reflect and give thanks to all who lost their lives – British, Libyans and others.”
He reminded those attending the service that it was also an opportunity to remember Libyans who “paid a heavy price for freedom” and died during the revolution.
Murrison continued: “I am proud that the British Government stood shoulder to shoulder with Libya during the revolution and I am in Tripoli today, to reiterate our commitment to Libya’s ongoing transition to democracy.”
Murrison added that he would be meeting ministers and the chief-of-staff to discuss how the UK could further its current support to the Libyan Armed Forces, to help them build a professional and accountable military, able to protect its citizens and respect their human rights.