By Libya Herald staff.
Paris, 26 September 2014:
France has demanded that Ansar Al-Sharia in Libya be designated a terrorist organisation by the . . .[restrict]UN Security Council. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius made the demand yesterday at the special meeting on Libya organised by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on the sidelines of the General Assembly meeting. Calling the country a “terrorist powder-keg”, Fabius told others at the meeting that Paris had formally requested “that Ansar al-Sharia be added to the Security Council terror list, the so-called Al-Qaeda list”.
“With Libya, we are faced with two challenge: the first is to initiate national reconciliation between the different Libya groups. But the second, is that we must find ways and means to put an end to what is a terrorist powder-keg,” he said.
So far, despite just five groups have been designated as terrorist organisations by the UN: Al-Qaeda, the Nusra Front in Syia, Boko Haram in Nigeria, IS (Daesh), and Iraq’s Kata’ib Hezbollah.
At present, other than the Libyan government, only the US has listed Ansar Al-Sharia as a terrorist body.
Separately, the Security Council voted last month to impose sanctions on individuals and groups seen as responsible for the current crisis in Libya. A list is believed to have been drawn up but not made public while efforts continue to promote national dialogue.
France has taken a lead in recent weeks to mobilise international action on Libya. Last month French President François Hollande called for UN intervention in Libya. Without it, the president said, “terrorism will spread across the region”.
Two weeks ago, France’s Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Libya had become a “hub for terrorist groups” and that France had to act “mobilise the international community” to deal with the issue. [/restrict]