The United Arab Emirates, along with other countries, has “periodically” violated the UN arms embargo imposed on Libya since 2011 and contributed to the intensification of “proxy conflict” in the country, according to a report by UN experts.
The UN report accused the UAE of providing weapons periodically and sometimes blatantly with little effort to conceal the source to armed outlawed militias in Libya.
Diplomats said Jordan was accused of training forces belonging to Khalifa Haftar, a strongman in eastern Libya who launched a military offensive in Tripoli in April, while the UAE, another supporter of Haftar, used bombers to support his forces.
The UAE has also been implicated in the bombing of a migrant detention center on the outskirts of Tripoli on July 2 that killed some 50 people in a horrific war crime.
However, the report does not provide a definitive answer in particular, although it refers to the “possibility” of the involvement of a foreign fighter, and draws in general to the US F-16 and Mirage-2000-9, which are in the UAE army.
Turkey, which has declared its support for Prime Minister Fayez Sarraj’s government, has provided military equipment to the Government of National Accord, from armored vehicles to unmanned aerial vehicles, the source said.
The experts noted in their report that they were still awaiting answers from several UN member states to their questions.
“The group also noted the presence of Chadian and Sudanese armed groups supporting forces loyal to the Government of National Accord (the government of Sarraj) and the Libyan National Army (Haftar’s army),” the report said.
“Although the military capabilities of both sides appear to have been strengthened, the impact of external armed groups on conflict resolution is in fact limited,” the experts said.
The report, which was issued on 29 October, confirmed to the Security Council that “the parties on both sides have received weapons, military equipment and technical support (…) in violation of the arms embargo.”
The detailed 85-page document contains more than 300 pages of annexes, including photographs, maps and shipments, and is to be discussed and approved by the 15 members of the UN Security Council at the end of the month at the end of the month.
The group of experts said it had “identified multiple actions that threaten security, peace and stability in Libya.”
Since the start of Haftar’s attack, experts said that “a new phase of instability, coupled with the interests of many states and non-state actors, has amplified the proxy conflict that has erupted since 2011.”
The experts pointed to the “tyranny of the use of precision-guided munitions fired from drones in military operations, which somewhat reduced the collateral damage expected in such a conflict.”
A diplomat said the use of drones was “enormous on both sides,” confirming the accusations made this summer by UN envoy Ghassan Salama, who expressed concern in this regard to the United Nations