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Sisi says Egypt will not allow threats to security from Libya

May 24, 2014 17:24

Egypt will not allow armed turmoil in neighboring Libya to threaten its national security, presidential frontrunner Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said in an interview with the pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat published on Saturday.

Libya has descended into factional chaos since the Western-backed uprising in 2011 that ousted Muammar Gaddafi, but Egypt has suffered street strife and Islamist militant violence since its own 2011 revolution that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

Sisi has already called on the United States to help fight jihadi terrorism and warned in a Reuters interview on May 15 that Libya was becoming a major security threat, with militants infiltrating across the 1,115km (693-mile) border.

In an interview published with the pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat published on Saturday, the former army chief said Cairo would "not allow the launching of any terrorist activities from inside Libya."

Libya has seen intense militia fighting in recent days with a renegade general calling on the wobbling Tripoli government to hand over power to the country's top judges.

Arms from Libya have flown freely across the Egyptian border since Gaddafi's ouster, a UN report found last year. It cited weapons trafficking as a threat to Egyptian security mainly because the arms are ending up in Egypt's volatile Sinai Peninsula where an Islamist insurgency has taken wing.

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