Russia announces ban on arms sales to Libya

MOSCOW Thu Mar 10, 2011 2:40pm IST

Rebels cheer after a bomb was detonated during clashes with pro-Gaddafi forces between Ras Lanuf and Bin Jawad March 9, 2011. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih

Rebels cheer after a bomb was detonated during clashes with pro-Gaddafi forces between Ras Lanuf and Bin Jawad March 9, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Asmaa Waguih

Related Topics

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia will ban all weapons sales to Libya, the Kremlin said in a statement on Thursday, effectively suspending billions of dollars worth of arms contracts with the government of Muammar Gaddafi.

The Kremlin decree brings Moscow in line with an arms embargo and other punitive measures imposed in a Feb. 26 United Nations Security Council resolution against Libya, where rebels are fighting to oust long-time leader Gaddafi.

But Russia, which holds the power of veto on the U.N. Security Council, has warned it opposes military intervention in Libya even as the United States and NATO weigh potential options in support of anti-Gaddafi rebels, including a no-fly zone.

Russia, the world's second-largest arms exporter after the United States, was one of the main weapons suppliers to Libya.

Thursday's order, signed by President Dmitry Medvedev, "bans the export from the Russian Federation to Libya as well as the sale, delivery and transfer... of all types of arms and related materials, including weapons and ammunition, combat vehicles and military hardware", the Kremlin said.

To ensure compliance, it added Russia would inspect all cargo to and from Libya if it suspects it may be hiding military equipment or supplies. The sanctions also ban financial loans or training aimed at bolstering Libya's military.

Russia's state-owned arms export monopoly Rosoboronexport on Wednesday said it had lost $2 billion worth of arms contracts with Gaddafi's government due to the U.N. sanctions against Tripoli.

The daily Kommersant reported last week Russia had also been near to closing deals to sell military aircraft and anti-aircraft missiles worth another $1.8 billion.

Meanwhile, a senior Russian arms official last week said unrest in Libya had cost Russia $4 billion in weapon sales to the region.

(Writing by Alissa de Carbonnel; Editing by Sophie Hares)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

GAZA CRISIS

WORLD SHOWCASE

Ukraine Crisis

Ukraine Crisis

Civilians killed in eastern Ukraine amid fierce fighting.  Full Article 

Afghanistan Violence

Afghanistan Violence

Karzai's cousin and Ghani ally killed in Afghan suicide attack.  Full Article 

U.S. defends Kerry

U.S. defends Kerry

U.S. officials defend Kerry from Israeli criticism.  Full Article 

Treaty Violated?

Treaty Violated?

U.S. says Russia violated nuclear treaty, urges immediate talks.  Full Article 

Ebola Outbreak

Ebola Outbreak

Nigeria isolates hospital in Lagos as Obama briefed on Ebola outbreak.  Full Article 

Ferry Disaster

Ferry Disaster

S.Korea ferry boss's driver turns himself in.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage