Remnants of the civil war – working to securely store arms and munitions in Libya

Staff of the organisation The HALO Trust

Staff of the organisation The HALO Trust, © The HALO Trust

18.06.2021 - Article

Germany is working intensivly to help bring lasting stability to Libya. In addition to supporting the political process led by the United Nations and participating in the EU operation IRINI, Germany is funding projects in the country, including ones to secure and dispose of explosive ordnance.

Insufficiently secured weapons and ammunition

After years of civil war in Libya, there are many places in which weapons, munitions and other agents of warfare are insufficiently secured. As the situation in the country remains unstable, there is a danger that these items could fall into the hands of armed militias or smugglers, who could then either employ them as such or use them to build improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The use or sale of IEDs could severely hamper the intra-Libyan peace process. There is also the risk that improper storage of munitions could lead to uncontrolled explosions, with potentially disastrous effects for the local population.

Providing training to the Libyan authorities

To prevent this, the Federal Foreign Office is providing 640,000 euro of funding for a HALO Trust project. This international NGO has a great deal of expertise in explosive ordnance disposal, as well as capacity building in weapons and ammunition management.

Specifically, the project will train staff of the Libyan security authorities – including the Libyan Mine Action Centre – in explosive ordnance disposal and secure storage of small arms and ammunition, and help them assess whether or not ammunition depots are safe. The aim is to enable the competent authorities in Libya to independently secure and monitor arms and ammunition at designated storage facilities.

The project is also working to safely destroy surplus stockpiled weapons and ammunition, as well as unexploded bombs and arms supplies. In this way, the project is contributing directly to the security of the Libyan civilian population and indirectly to the further stabilisation of the Country.


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