Western — 27 April 2016

Apr 27, 2016 | International actors

UN Special Envoy Martin Kobler called for western forces to help combat ISIS in partnership with the Government of National Accord (GNA). Kobler said foreign powers should offer training and military support, combined with an end to the UN arms embargo. “The Daesh expansion can only be stopped militarily,” he said. “There is a consensus that a united Libyan army needs training; the lifting of the weapons embargo is very important. We need the most modern weapons to finish Daesh.”

Following those comments, G5 leaders met in Hanover on 25 April to discuss options to stem the flow of refugees crossing the Mediterranean from Libya. Reports indicate that the US may join a NATO effort to expand its support to the current EU patrol of international waters off coast of Libya. Officials at the G5 meeting said it was now being proposed that the EU and NATO work together sharing intelligence and assets to close down the smugglers’ networks. The wider Libya mission is likely to be approved by alliance leaders at a Warsaw summit on 7 July, according to the Italian defence minister, Roberta Pinotti.“At the NATO level, we have asked for Operation Active Endeavour to be recalibrated from an anti-terrorist operation in the eastern Mediterranean to one which oversees the Libyan coast,” said Pinotti.