By Libya Herald reporter.
15 November 2016:
The UN Panel of Experts was told in Tobruk today by members of the House of Representatives that the UN arms embargo had to be lifted. It had made an already difficult situation in Libya far worse. Fighting terrorism had become much tougher and instead of helping resolve the situation, it had exacerbated it.
The main function of the Panel of Experts appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is to find out if the UN embargo on arms to Libya is being flouted.
In Tobruk, the six-man panel headed by Steven Spittaels from Belgium met various HoR members including members of committees and discussed the difficulties of fighting terrorism given the lack of arms and equipment. They also discussed other current issues such as the cash crisis and oil sales and income.
They were told by the HoR members they met, including Omar Ghaith the vice chairman of the HoR’s National Defence and Security Committee, that the sanctions had to go. Their continued existence was a severe handicap not just in the fight against terrorism but was impeding the restoration of security and the fight against crime and making it difficult for legitimate state institutions to work.
Although commissioned by the UN, the Panel of Experts is not linked to the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL).