Libya unrest: Gaddafi’s ex-aide accuses West

2015-01-01 12:46
Former Libyan leader – now late – Muammar Gaddafi. (AFP)

Former Libyan leader – now late – Muammar Gaddafi. (AFP)

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Cairo - The West bears a portion of the blame for the ongoing unrest in Libya, where rival militias are locked in a heightened power struggle, according to a former close aide of the slain Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

"The West offered financial and military assistance to militants during their war to oust the Gaddafi regime. They later used this assistance to turn whole towns in Libya into strongholds of terrorists," Ahmed Gaddaf al-Dam, a cousin of Gaddafi, told dpa in Cairo.

Gaddafi, who ruled Libya for more than 40 years, was deposed in 2011 in a Nato-supported armed revolt. He was later caught and killed by rebels in his hometown of Sirte.

Libya has in recent months seen its worst violence since Gaddafi's overthrow, amid international fears that the oil-rich country is sliding into chaos.

Former rebels, who participated in the anti-Gaddafi uprising, are battling each other, mainly for control of oil facilities in eastern Libya.

Weapons

Libya has two rival parliaments and two governments at present.

"The country now has no army or police. Weapons are in everyone's hands, and the big loser is Libya," Gaddaf al-Dam, said.

"The size of weapons available now far exceeds those left behind from the Gaddafi era."

Gaddaf al-Dam, 64, served as a co-ordinator for Egyptian-Libyan relations under Gaddafi.

Last year, an Egyptian court refused to extradite him to the Libyan authorities for alleged corruption.

"Libyans have started to miss the Gaddafi days after all trouble and sweeping chaos they have seen in recent years."

In August, Islamist-led insurgents seized the Libyan capital Tripoli and installed their own government and parliament, forcing the internationally-recognised government and elected legislature to move to the eastern city of Tobruk.

The violence has prompted several countries to evacuate their citizens and diplomats from Libya.

Read more on:    muammar gaddafi  |  libya  |  north africa

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