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Lavrov says Russia does not consider air strikes on Islamic State in Libya
Moscow does not consider air strikes on the Islamic State terrorist group in Libya as no such requests were received, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday.
"We have no such plans as we do not have an invitation from the Libyan government to consider. So there is nothing to talk about. And moreover, Libya has no government at the moment," Lavrov said after talks with his Italian counterpart, Paolo Gentiloni.
"We welcome and support efforts of the Italian colleagues aimed at the international community's help to Libyans to overcome the current split and form a national government," Lavrov said. "When such a national Libyan government is formed it will decide how to solve the problems Libya is facing after its collapse caused by NATO bombings."
He said the Islamic State, which is banned in Russia, was not the only problem in Libya.
"Weapons and militants who were supported and armed in Libya to overthrow [former Libyan leader Muammar] Qaddafi are far beyond its borders. And now they are doing their dirty job in Africa and Libya's neighboring countries and the European countries who armed them before the deposition [of Qaddafi] have to fight them," he said.
"Therefore, we are sincerely interested in stabilization of the situation in Libya," the minister added.
[Source: Itar Tass, Rome, 11Dec15]
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