Southern Libya remains a region of endemic instability wracked by communal conflict, a shortage of basic services, rampant smuggling, and fragmented or collapsed institutions. The region has long existed on the periphery of Libya’s politics and international concerns—but that must change. Increasingly, the vacuum of governance in the south has drawn in political actors from northern Libya and outside states. Extremists seeking refuge in the south and migrants being smuggled through the region directly impact the security of Libya, neighboring states like Tunisia, and Europe…
Boris Johnson Weighs In On Libya
In an article for the Spectator, the British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (who is also a former editor of the Spectator) discusses his impressions of Libya from a recent trip to Tripoli covering the hardships faced by migrants and refugees in the country, and the economic and political crisis currently facing Libya. He also uses the article as an opportunity to tout British support and spending on Libya, and bizarrely not only seems surprised that Libya has cafes, hotels and beaches, but also appears to cite tourism as a key facet of Libyan recovery.
If Libya continues in its current condition we risk having a failed state — a haven for terrorists, gun runners and people traffickers — only a few miles from the EU’s southern shores. But if Libya’s leaders seize this moment, the opportunity is immense.
If they can put aside their differences, and stabilise the country, then this place of six million will not only be able to make sensible use of their amazing patrimony of hydrocarbons. They can open up some of the greatest tourist sites in the world, including Leptis Magna — currently too dangerous to visit.
On the streets of Tripoli you can see people beginning to relax, drinking coffee and fizzy drinks outside the cafés. It is now six weeks since a tank round went into one of the big hotels, and spirits are rising. If you shut one eye to the capsized warship in the harbour — sunk by the RAF in 2011 — you can see how it might be a fine resort town.
Click here to read the full article.