Libya U.N. envoy says Qatar arming Islamists

TANGIER, Morocco Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:32am EST

A Libyan man stands next to a poster of Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani near the court house in Benghazi June 8, 2011. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem

A Libyan man stands next to a poster of Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani near the court house in Benghazi June 8, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Mohammed Salem

TANGIER, Morocco (Reuters) - Libya's United Nations envoy Mohammed Abdel Rahman Shalgam accused Qatar on Friday of providing weapons and money to Libyan Islamists and told the fellow Arab state to stop meddling in Tripoli's domestic affairs.

"There are facts on the ground, they (Qatar) give money to some parties, the Islamist parties. They give money and weapons and they try to meddle in issues that do not concern them and we reject that," Shalgam told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in the Moroccan city Tangier.

"The Qatari state is still providing assistance to some (Libyan) parties and they are giving them money and we reject this totally," he added.

"Qatar was among countries which have provided us with the greatest military, financial and political support (in ousting slain leader Muammar Gaddafi).

"We thank them ... We don't want them to spoil this great feat through meaningless acts of meddling," he said.

Qatar, the world's top exporter of liquefied gas exporter and home to the influential Al Jazeera satellite channel, played a key role in an international alliance that helped rebels topple Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi in August.

Qatar, however, denies interference in other states' affairs, saying it uses resources and influence for the benefit of all Arabs.

Shalgam said he has discussed the allegations of interference with Qatari authorities including its ruler Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani and its prime minister.

"We have had frank conversations with them ... I've warned them as a brother ... I tell them, 'You have helped us to a great extent'...The Tunisian people provided us with the greatest help of all and they did not interfere in our domestic affairs."

(Reporting By Souhail Karam; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

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Comments (1)
Tiu wrote:
Slowly it dawns on the Libyans there might be a bit of quid pro quo to pony up. They seem not to like it!

Nov 18, 2011 10:26am EST  --  Report as abuse
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