Libya trains Syrian rebels according to the Russian government 0803121

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Defense News - Libya / Syria

 
 
Thursday, March 8, 2012, 08:04 AM
 
Libya trains Syrian rebels according to the Russian government.
Russia on Wednesday, March 7, 2012, accused Libya of training Syrian rebels who are fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad, saying that "this is completely unacceptable." The accusation came as Vitaly Churkin, the Russian permanent representative to the United Nations, was speaking at an open meeting of the UN Security Council on Libya.
     
Russia on Wednesday, March 7, 2012, accused Libya of training Syrian rebels who are fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad, saying that "this is completely unacceptable." The accusation came as Vitaly Churkin, the Russian permanent representative to the United Nations, was speaking at an open meeting of the UN Security Council on Libya.
Free Syrian Army fighters pose for a portrait at their headquarters in Idlib, north Syria, Sunday, March 4, 2012.
     

"We have received information that in Libya, with the support of the authorities, there is a special training center for the Syrian revolutionaries and people are sent to Syria to attack the legal government," Churkin said.

"This is, according to international law, completely unacceptable," the Russian ambassador told the 15-nation council. "Furthermore, this kind of activity is undermining the efforts to maintain stability in the Middle East region."

Libyan Prime Minister Abdurrahim El-Keib was present at the council meeting, which started here on Wednesday afternoon.

"Taken into consideration the fact that al-Qaeda is active in the territory of Syria, a question arises: Is there a chance that an export of revolution could become an export of terrorism?" Churkin said.

The new Libyan authorities should concentrate on the domestic problems of the North African country, rather than training Syrian rebels who are battling the Syrian government forces, Churkin said.

Last month, Libya, one of the first foreign countries to recognize the Syrian opposition -- the Syrian National Council -- as the legitimate authority of Syria in October last year, said that it would donate 100 million U.S. dollars in humanitarian aid to the Syrian opposition and allow them to open an office in its capital of Tripoli.

The Syrian government has repeatedly accused some Arab and Western countries of tunneling weapons to the armed groups in Syria in addition to rendering financial assistance to them. It said in December 2011 that "armed terrorist groups" had killed more than 2,000 army and security personnel.

The United Nations said recently that "well over" 7,500 people have died in Syria's violence since March last year.

The nearly one-year-old crisis has started peacefully but protesters have begun to take up arms, citing the alleged tough crackdown by Syria's army and security apparatus.

Countries, such as Russia and China, have maintained that political solution is the best option to the Syrian crisis, warning against any foreign intervention of Syria's internal affairs.

 

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