Libya needs to lift ban on arms for better coastguards' performance, Al-Sirraj tells EU officials

Libya needs to lift ban on arms for better coastguards' performance, Al-Sirraj tells EU officials

October 03, 2017 - 22:58
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Written By: AbdulkaderAssad

The Head of the Presidential Council, Fayez Al-Sirraj, has received in Tripoli Tuesday the Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Libya, Bettina Muscheidt, the Commander of EU Operation Sophia, Admiral Credendino, and the defense advisor for the Delegation of the European Union to Libya, in the presence of the Coast Guard Commander Abdelhamid Tumiya, and the head of the general directorate of the coast security Colonel Tariq Shanbour, as well as other officials.

They all discussed counter-illegal immigration efforts, including the training of Libyan coastguards and border guards to fight away the human trafficking networks and gangs, in addition to the cooperation in information sharing.

Al-Sirraj reiterated in the meeting the need for lifting the ban on arming the coastguards in order to help them fight the human trafficking gangs, adding that he looked forward to having essential and vital counter-fuel smuggling efforts as his request was answered with appointing Operation Sophia for that task.

"The NGOs who send vessels into the Mediterranean must work in an organized manner so they don't overlap with the work of the Libyan coastguards." Al-Sirraj told the EU officials.

Al-Sirraj was informed during the meeting about the completion of training courses in which 136 coastguards finished their training duties in Italy in addition to other groups in other EU countries.

"500 coastguards from Libya will be finishing their training programs before the end of the next summer as cooperation with Libya continues to go the right way and as Libyan coastguards continues to show sincere learning and professional efforts and capabilities. We hail the cooperation between Operation Sophia and Libyan Navy and the results it has brought so far." The commander of Operation Sophia remarked.