x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

UAE updates UN on Libya measures

Letter details action on asset freezes and humanitarian efforts.

NEW YORK // The Government has told the UN Security Council it is freezing the assets of the Libyan leader Col Muammar Qaddafi and his associates while also enforcing travel bans and an arms embargo against the North African country.

A letter from UAE officials said the Central Bank had been informed about a Security Council decision to freeze the assets of Col Qaddafi and members of his cabal "in order to ensure compliance" with the 15-nation body's rulings.

The letter, dated May 16 but not made public until yesterday, updates the Security Council on the implementation of two resolutions adopted in response to the crackdown on anti-Qaddafi protesters earlier this year.

The first, passed in February, placed travel bans and asset freezes on Col Qaddafi and some of his children and officials, and referred alleged atrocities to the International Criminal Court.

The second, passed the following month, listed further officials to be subjected to asset freezes and authorised foreign air forces to establish a no-fly zone over Libya and use "all necessary measures" to protect civilians.

The first resolution required UN members to seize all "funds, other financial assets and economic resources" owned by Col Qaddafi and his named associates. The UAE letter did not mention whether any assets had been frozen in the Emirates.

The letter said the Ministry of Defence, the General Command of the Armed Forces and the Federal Customs Authority had been informed about the arms embargo. The Ministry of the Interior was responsible for ensuring that Col Qaddafi and other Libyan officials listed in the resolution were "banned from entering or transiting through" the Emirates, it said.

The letter also reminded the Security Council about the deployment of a dozen UAE jets to enforce the no-fly zone over Libyan airspace, and provided updates on the country's humanitarian efforts.

UAE-based charities have helped ship 750 tonnes of aid to rebel-held Benghazi, erected 60 tents for displaced people at Ras Jdir on the Tunisian border and airlifted 200 tonnes of medicine, ambulances and other supplies to the camp.

The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Humanitarian and Charitable Foundation sent an "aid convoy" of 10 ambulances and 10 lorries loaded with 330 tonnes of food, worth an estimated US$2,250,000 (Dh918,200), the letter added.