Thursday, November 24, 2011

Libya: EU-ACP Assembly: Libyan weapons threaten security in the Sahel region

European Union

The Joint Parliamentary Assembly of MEPs and MPs from African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries condemned the violence in Syria and Egypt and voiced concern that Libyan weapons in al-Qaeda hands could pose a threat to the entire world.

MEPs and MPs from ACP countries expressed strong support for the legitimate democratic aspirations of the people of the Middle East and North Africa in a resolution on the Arab Spring adopted by the EU-ACP Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) on Wednesday, in Lomé, Togo.

Refugees from Libya

The Assembly called on the EU, the African Union and the UN to help tackle the humanitarian crisis affecting hundreds of thousands of refugees who have fled Libya to neighbouring Tunisia, Egypt, Niger, Mali and Chad and to Europe.

Libyan weapons in Al-Qaeda hands

MEPs and ACP MPs voiced concern over the fact that the al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQMI) had salvaged logistical resources and weapons and that this was rapidly leading to insecurity in the Sahelo-Saharan strip and posed a threat to the entire world.

The Assembly insisted that the EU and the UN should play a role in recovering weapons from former combatants and from civilians, and ensuring the security of Libya’s neighbours.

Assembly condemns violent repression in Egypt and Syria

The resolution condemns the violent repression currently taking place in Egypt and Syria, and calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all arrested demonstrators, human rights defenders and journalists. The Assembly also calls for independent and transparent investigations into the recent violent clashes in Egypt.

European Parliament's Sakharov Prize to go to Arab Spring representatives

The European Parliament is to award its 2011 Sakharov Prize for freedom of thought to five representatives of the Arab Spring: Asmaa Mahfouz (Egypt), Ahmed al-Zubair Ahmed al-Sanusi (Libya), Razan Zaitouneh (Syria), Ali Farzat (Syria) and posthumously to Mohamed Bouazizi (Tunisia), in recognition and support of their drive for freedom and human rights. The prize will be presented to the winners by President Jerzy Buzek at Parliament's formal session in Strasbourg, on 14 December.

The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly brings together elected representatives of the European Union and the ACP countries, that is MEPs and MPs from the 78 states that are signatories to the Cotonou Agreement, which is the basis for ACP-EU development cooperation.