Call for Disarmament and Arms Control to Protect Human Rights in Libya
United Nations member States will soon examine the Human Rights situation in Libya during its Universal Periodic Review (UPR). To feed into it, civil society got together at the pre-session and WILPF brought our partner from Libyan Women’s Platform for Peace (LWPP).
Today, Libya is immersed in a conflict between two regions; two contended governments and the problems emerging from the field are unprecedented. Freedom of expression is non-existent, civil society groups whom are meant to make a difference on the ground, are all working tirelessly from exile and the most frightening aspect of the aftermath of Gaddafi’s departure is the assassinations of prominent activists such as Salwa Bughaighis, civilians and the continuous practice of torture.
Recently, Security Council resolution 2174 has mandated the accountability of war criminal and warlords; however, they are still free today in Libya. The resolution also calls for a political dialogue, but to achieve sustainable peace, Libya will require more than a ceasefire. An interactive, conflict resolution approach including civil society with the inclusion of women and youth will be essential.
Weapons in Libya have spread within and outside the country and fueled this and other conflicts; it is undeniable that their flow is no longer under control. As conversations on lifting the arms embargo increase amongst international actors, LWPP called for actions to ensure an immediate end of any leakages of weapons from the army into the hands of extremist groups.
WILPF and LWPP called for an end of impunity of warlords, including referral to the International Criminal court inclusive Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration and Security sector reform processes that rely on the participation and contributions of women and youth. Due diligence in the protection of human rights activists from any faction is an essential prerequisite for this peace process. LWPP and WILPF urge member States to make recommendations to Libya during the UPR in this sense.