Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Fears Over Libya's Missiles And Mustard Gas Falling into the Wrong Hands - 24th Aug 2011

Among the most pressing concerns about a post-Gaddafi Libya is the risk of the country's many loose weapons falling into the wrong hands.

Television pictures of rebels swarming out of Gaddafi's Tripoli bunkers heaving with newly-acquired weaponry have not reassured nervous security officials on both sides of the Atlantic.

"Weapons proliferation has been a matter of concern for many months for us and the TNC (Transitional National Council)," US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters in Washington.

Most worrying is the amount of surface-to-air missile (SAMs) launchers washing around Libya.

In April, US Africa Command commander General Carter Ham told America's Congress as many as 20,000 SAMs were in the country when the operation began.

"Many of those, we know, are now not accounted for. Each one is capable of bringing down a civilian airliner," he said. Read More