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UN must deal with 'terrorist threat' in Libya, French defence minister

Jean-Yves Le Drian, French Defence Minister
Jean-Yves Le Drian, French Defence Minister

French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Tuesday that the "terrorist threat" in Libya must be addressed at the upcoming UN General Assembly meeting, alongside the dangers of jihadists in Iraq and Syria.

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In Cairo in Egypt for a meeting with counterpart General Sedki Sobhi, Le Drian said the talks had focused not only on the Islamic State extremist group but also the chaos in Egypt's neighbour Libya, where rival militias are engaged in combat.

Paris and Cairo are “concerned about the situation in Libya and we hope there is a global mobilisation at the UN General Assembly to fight the terrorist threat [in that country]”, Le Drian said.

The UN General Assembly meets next week in New York.

"We must act as our collective security is at stake in Syria and in Libya, the gateway to Europe and Egypt.... At the UN General Assembly meeting I hope to have a broad roadmap to end the chaos in Libya."

"The question is what roadmap the international community can come up with collectively under the authority of the United Nations in cooperation with the authorities in Tobruk," Le Drian added.

Libya's parliament and the internationally recognised government relocated in August to Tobruk, 1,500 kilometres east of Tripoli, as Islamist and nationalist militias battled for control of the capital.

Libya has been in chaos since Moamer Kadhafi was overthrown and killed three years ago, with interim authorities confronting powerful militias which fought to oust the dictator.
 

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