Algeria warns of flow of weapons in Libya

Algerian Foreign Minister Mourad Medelci Friday warned that the flow of weapons to Libya can encourage terrorist activities in the region which would have disastrous consequences on all neighboring countries.

"What is happening in Libya can encourage terrorism everywhere, including on our territory," Medelci told Algerian state radio.

"We have handled the Libyan crisis taking into consideration the quality of our relations with this country, which is important for us, and at the same time the security risks, as preventing a terrorist threat is among the main concerns of Algeria, not only on its territory but also on neighboring territories," Medelci said.

Medelci reiterated Algeria's position for a political solution to end the crisis in Libya. "The political solution is that endorsed by the African Union and supported by Algeria," he said.

Medelci underlined that Algeria "supports the political solution on which a broad consensus has been reached," adding that this solution must be preceded by a ceasefire and the setting up of ceasefire monitoring mechanism.

The local Algerian Echorouk newspaper, in its Tuesday issue, reported that "the security chaos in Libya, since the start of fights between rebels and pro-Gaddafi forces on Feb. 17, led to stealing arms from arsenals, and for now about 20 million weapons are in the hands of rebels and extremist groups."

Algeria has warned several times that the alarming proliferation of weapons in Libya would lead to an escalation of terrorist attacks in the region.

[Source: Xinhua, Algiers, 23Apr11]

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