Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/16/2012 -- Libya is at a significant crossroads following the conclusion of the country's civil war in 2011, and the subsequent end of the 42-year rule of its leader Colonel Muammar Qadhafi. The country is home to an educated population and a considerable oil and petrochemicals industry. For these reasons, the internal situation in Libya has significant ramifications beyond the country's borders. The report examines Libya's current defence and security environment, and the prospects for restoring the country to normality following the end of the civil war. The general conclusion reached is that while Libya has a clear potential to emerge as a peaceful, democratic and prosperous member of the international community much work remains to be done in stabilising the current security situation.
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In terms of the reports key findings, BMI believes that the most pressing priority for Libya's new leaders in the National Transitional Council (NTC); the caretaker government pending elections expected in June, is to stabilise the security situation by disarming those anti-Qadhafi militias still in existence and providing them with the opportunity to either join the emerging Libyan armed forces, or to be assisted in their search for productive work. Secondly, the NTC must work to reduce the illicit flow of arms from the country, which have been taken from Libyan army stocks during the civil war. These weapons are finding their way to insurgent groups in Africa and further afield. Thirdly, the NTC must press forward its efforts to reform, recapitalise and reorient the country's armed forces. This can be done via the integration of former militias into the Libyan armed forces, and via the acquisition of new military equipment. The NTC must also continue to work for the disarmament of anti-Qadhafi militias whom have not yet surrendered their weapons. In addition, the TNC must endeavour to reduce tensions existing between several of Libya's ethnic groups.
A number of changes have been made since BMI published its last Libya Defence and Security Report. These include:
- Updated analysis regarding Libya's internal security situation and intra-ethnic violence.
- A detailed summary of the NTC's efforts to reconstitute Libya's armed forces, and to equip the armed forces with new materiel.
- A summary of Libya's developing defence and security relationship with the United States of America.
- An examination of the NTC's efforts to secure weapons looted from Libyan army stocks during the civil war, including Man-Portable Air Defence Systems (MANPADS).
- A discussion of the efforts ongoing in Libya to destroy recently discovered and undeclared stocks of chemical weapons which were held by Qadhafi's regime.
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