WASHINGTON - The United States is investigating reports that a ship carrying weapons for Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's forces was allowed to dock in Algeria, which would be considered a violation of UN resolutions, a State Department official said on Friday.
The United States called on Algeria, if it was aware of the shipment, to stop it from reaching Gaddafi's forces.Libyan opposition sources expressed concern about the ship, saying it was sailing under a Libyan flag, carrying weapons, and arrived on July 19 at the port of Djen Djen in Algeria, from where the cargo was being taken over the border into Libya.
"We have heard reports that a ship carrying arms to Gaddafi's regime was recently permitted to dock in Algeria and that these weapons are currently being transported overland into neighboring Libya," the State Department official told Reuters.
"The United States government is working to ascertain the veracity of these claims, which have only just come to light. If true, this would likely constitute a violation of UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973."
The United States this month formally recognized the rebel National Transitional Council as the legitimate interim government of Libya and has called on Gaddafi to step down.