13 Nov 2018 10:26

ISIL, Al Qaeda militants get foothold in Libya, recruit extremists back from Syria and Iraq - Russia's Prikhodko

MOSCOW. Nov 13 (Interfax) - Libyan territory hosts multiple terrorist enclaves in which militants of the Islamic State (ISIL) and Al Qaeda terrorist organizations (both banned in Russia) have gained a foothold and are recruiting extremists returning from Syria and Iraq, deputy chief of the Russian government's secretariat Sergei Prikhodko said in Italy's Palermo.

"One of the main obstacles along this path is the unsatisfactory situation in respect to security. The country has numerous terrorist enclaves where ISIL and Al Qaeda militants have taken a foothold and are boosting their ranks by admitting extremists returning from Syria and Iraq. Armed clashes between local armed groups took place in Tripoli from the end of August to the end of September 2018. Furthermore, the threat of terrorist actions, including those targeting foreign interests, remains," Prikhodko said on the occasion of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's participation in the international conference on Libya in Palermo.

Since Libya has no unified Armed Forces, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 2441 on November 5, 2018 to prolong the UN ban on arms exports to Libya.

"Another stumbling block is the sides' inability to reach an agreement on creating a legislative framework, which is needed to organize nationwide elections: the House of Representatives in Tobruk in eastern Libya keeps rescheduling its session to debate laws on a constitutional referendum and elections due to the absence of a quorum," Prikhodko said.