There's been a lot of talk about the European Union and US's plans to send arms to Libya. Here's what you need to know about it:
1 Where’s Libya?
Libya is a country in North Africa. The Mediterranean Sea and 6 different countries border Libya.
2 Why is it such a mess?
In 2011, long-time Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was brutally murdered by the National Transitional Council (NTC), who were backed by Nato. With no leader, the country spiralled into chaos with different militias and governments attempting to take control, creating a civil war. The terror group, IS, exploited the chaos and successfully gained control over several cities. IS members based in Libya carried out several deadly attacks in Tunisia and although they were unsuccessful, tried to occupy a border town in early March.
3 What’s going on now?
World powers including the US are offering to send weapons to the new Libyan government, on their request, in order to fight against ISIS and other violent extremists. Diplomats stated that they would support Libya’s request for exceptions to the UN arms embargo. However, the EU and US are both members of Nato, who helped NTC in murdering Libya’s former leader, Gaddafi, which subsequently caused Libya’s downfall.
4 Who agrees and is offering to send arms?
Out of 197 countries, senior officials or foreign ministers from 21 countries (Algeria, Chad, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Jordan, Italy, Malta, Morocco, Niger, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sudan, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom) and four organisations (the European Union, the United Nations, the League of Arab States, and the African Union) participated in the meeting and agreed to provide humanitarian, economic, and security support to the Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA).
5 Who doesn’t agree?
The GNA is currently facing issues with two rival goverments situated in Tripoli and Tobruk. General Khalifa Haftar, who is currently the most powerful military commander in Libya, is running his own army.