Armaments, but no troops: how Russia could help Libya


August 18 , 2017 – Fort Russ News – 

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RIA Novosti – translated by Inessa Sinchougova

Russia could begin to supply land armaments and helicopters to Libya, but there is no talk of a possible introduction of a Russian military contingent, said Igor Korotchenko, director of the Center for the Analysis of the World Arms Trade.

Libyan National Army Marshal, Khalifa Haftar, told reporters that Libya is discussing with Russia the possibility of providing military assistance.

Earlier, the head of Rosoboronexport (Russian Military Exports enterprise) security department, Valery Varlamov, told journalists that Russia was ready to consider the issue of arms deliveries to Libya, but the security issue of arms travelling further across North Africa needed to be discussed.

“Military aid to Libya can be provided in the form of arms deliveries: we have not concluded whether it will be about gratuitous deliveries or whether the Libyan side is able to pay these contracts.” Given that even in the conditions of the internal military conflict, Libya continues to be a rich country, exporting oil. Under various international norms, it may mean that such contracts must be paid for,” Korotchenko said.

Talking about the types of weapons that Moscow could offer, the expert noted that, first of all, it could be armored vehicles, small arms, helicopters and drones; that is the full spectrum of what is necessary to fight “rebel groups”.

Moscow will not send a military contingent to Libya.

“I emphasize that we are participating in an anti-terrorist operation in Syria at the invitation of its legitimate authorities, but there is no practical need to expand the Russian military presence,” Korotchenko said.

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