AU worried by French arms for Libya rebels

2011-06-30 09:49

Malabo - African leaders are concerned by French arms deliveries to Libyan rebels, fearing weapons could end up in the hands of terrorists, according to a top official.

Ahead of a two-day African Union (AU) summit here from Thursday, AU Commission chairperson Juan Ping did not criticise France directly but said he was worried by weapons proliferation.

France acknowledged on Wednesday that it had begun dropping arms to rebels in Libya while Nato ally Britain said it would not follow suit over concerns about UN Security Council authorization.

"What worries us is not who is giving what," Ping said late on Wednesday.

"It is simply that these weapons are being given by all parties to all the other parties. These weapons are already reaching al-Qaeda, drug dealers and traffickers. They will be used to destabilise African states and to kidnap tourists for whom you pay ransom."

He said the arms deliveries could backfire on the governments who supply them.

"If these arms are found in the desert it is a problem for everybody, for you [Westerners] as well. The people who are being kidnapped [by terrorists] are Westerners," said Ping.

Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb, the North African branch of the terror organisation, has been holding four French hostages since September last year as well as an Italian women kidnapped in February.

Two French journalists held for 18 months in Afghanistan arrived in France Thursday after being released by their Taliban captors.

  • tseliso.molukanele - 2011-06-30 10:11

    so the weapons freeze only applies to the Gov of Libya? rebels who can only be recognised as criminals in the country can do as they please with help from the west. Shouldn't NATO bomb the rebels to protect civilians and shouldn't the Hague issue warrants of arrest for the crimes against humanity that the rebels are committing. Are they not concerned about stopping the war?

      Wes - 2011-06-30 12:43

      I don't understand people like you. Then again, you would love living under dictator Malema wouldn't you.

      melchiedek - 2011-06-30 14:15

      i agree with you 100 percent,you see this is a clear indication of the motive the west have.those rebels are killing civilians who by virtue also have a right to follow or agree with whom ever they choose.why are the rebels not cgarged aswell.they make sick.and au delegates they just dogs bucking from adistance when civilians are being by this rebels,nato.

      Sooth Slayer - 2011-07-01 16:10

      Wes, (i) Malema is not a dictator. he has never forced or dicated to anyone what they should do and how they should do it. (ii) Malema was elected (freely and fairly) to lead the ANC youth league for another term. (iii) Malema's talk about nationalization is not his own, but that of his constituency (South African youths affiliated with the ANCYL - and need i tell you that there are millions of them). So if you think Malema is a dictator for the sole reason that you (and a few other loud-mouths like you) do not like him or agree with him, then so be it. We cannot help you or engage you in any meaningful talk, because you clearly do not understand or you are simply choosing to be stupid.

  • Ross - 2011-06-30 10:40

    What about the South African manufactured sniper rifles supplied to Gaddafi the criminal?

      radarblip - 2011-06-30 11:57


      Indomitable Momo - 2011-06-30 12:27

      Those were supplied and paid for legitimately when Gaddafi's gov was recognized by the UN. SA did not just drop guns on the floor for any person to pick up. Don't u think that the French weapons will fall into the wrong hands? The West wants the oil, that's all its about.

      Wes - 2011-06-30 12:46

      @ Indomitable Momo You really make little sense, since most of the oil is going to India and China. If your statement is true, surely these countries will be bombing Libya. Next time take some time off and really think about what you are saying.

      melchiedek - 2011-06-30 14:22

      gaddafi is not a criminal during apartheid when our people needed shelter gaddafi was there to assist where was the west?get your facts straight this is all about the oil in that country with gaddafi out of the picture who will stop are you saying is correct for the rebels to shoot and kill people who agree with gaddafi but is wrong for them to defend themselves.

      Datbrotherfromthestates - 2011-06-30 22:23

      ross,I bet you think that you are a "decent human being" dont ya? you hionestly believe that your bigoted response and the bigots that agreed with your response was a good and noble question dont ya? you gave that response knowing good and well that south africa sold those weapons to gadaffi years ago didnt ya? so you know what that makes you? a sick lying bigot! you whites will NEVER have a white occupying force in africa ever again. france is CLEARLY in violation of resolution 1973 and you know it. but you bigots from apartheid will tell ANY lie as you have done all your lives to suit your needs. the AU should go and defend gadaffi since the bigots from nato have been violating the resolution since it was implemented. as for you? the sooner that they take back the land that you are ILLEGALLY squatting on the sooner they get rid of you.

  • PMG - 2011-06-30 11:13

    Who cares what those despotic losers at the AU think?

      Tereblanche - 2011-06-30 14:18

      Atleast they are despots in their own continent, rather than imperialists pretending to understand democracy whereas they practise slavery and menslaughter.

  • Wonderboy - 2011-06-30 11:27

    I don't think they need to worry, Ghadafi and his terrorist buddies already have all the arms they need.

  • Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-01 14:42

    Long live Brother Leader, true son of the soil. Western Hegemony and Imperialism will be defeated.

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