Italy says West prepared to fight against DAESH in Libya

Western powers prepared to take on DAESH terror organisation in Libya, even if North African country refuses UN proposal for unified government, says Italy's defence minister

Photo by: AP (Archive )
Photo by: AP (Archive )

Italian Defense Minister Roberta Pinotti, right, and US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter shake hands at the end of joint press conference on the occasion of their bilateral meeting, in Rome, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015.

Italy's defence minister stated on Thursday that Western powers are prepared to fight DAESH in Libya, even if the country rejects the United Nations proposal for a unified government.

"We cannot imagine the situation in Libya remaining in a stall as spring comes and goes," Defence Minister Roberta Pinotti said.

At a Paris meeting last week of defense ministers from countries in the anti-DAESH coalition, Pinotti said that there was "total agreement" that a Libya unity government should call for help to fight against DAESH.

She said that DAESH has been used in the current political vacuum and is pushing Italy and its allies to be ready for an emergency action.

"In the past month, we have worked more diligently with Americans, British and French," Pinotti said. "I wouldn't call it an acceleration, and it's certainly not unilateral. We are all agreed that we must avoid uncoordinated action," she said.

Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook announced on Wednesday that the US had already sent "a small number of military personnel" into Libya "to engage in conversations with local forces to get a clearer picture of exactly what's happening there."

"We're looking at military options," Cook added.

Libya suffers from turmoil as it is currently divided between two parliaments with the General National Council (GNC) administering the country’s capital, Tripoli, and the rival House of Representatives being located in Tobruk. 

Libya was the deadliest in years, since the fall of autocrat Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, who was killed amid a NATO-backed military campaign to remove him from power. After his fall, the country was dragged into a civil war.

Terrorist and militant organisations established a foothold in the country by taking advantage of the chaos.

Libya’s Sirte and Darnah Provinces reportedly represent DAESH’s two main strongholds.

TRTWorld and agencies