Due to the inability of the Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) to effectively administer its territory, many areas of Libya's vast ungoverned space constituted potential safe havens for terrorists and violent extremist organizations in 2016, including Benghazi, Darnah, and the deserts in the south and the west. The GNA devoted significant effort to wiping out ISIL-Libya, but due to the difficulties of controlling the southern and desert borders in particular, it was unable to track flows of foreign terrorist fighters in and out of its territory. Rival factions and political stakeholders outside of the GNA, including in the House of Representatives and the "Libyan National Army," had also not stemmed or tracked the flow of foreign terrorist fighters.

In 2016, Libya requested international assistance with the destruction of its remaining chemical weapons program components, approximately 500 metric tons of category 2 chemical weapons precursors, to prevent its acquisition by terrorists operating less than 60 km away. In total, nine countries and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons contributed to the removal and destruction effort, with Denmark removing the chemicals from Libya, and Germany completing the actual destruction. The United States made a sizeable financial contribution to the overall effort. Libya retained a stockpile of natural uranium ore concentrate (yellowcake), however, stored in a former military facility near Sebha in Libya's south. This material represents a limited risk of trafficking and proliferation due to the bulk and weight of the storage containers and the need for extensive additional processing before the material would be suitable for weapons purposes.

The Department of State's Export Control and Related Border Security program efforts in Libya will focus on border enforcement capacity building through the provision of land, air, and sea border security training for Libyan officials, with the aim of advancing the GNA's ability to mitigate the threat posed by ISIS, its affiliates, and related entities. Targeted technical training and equipment for land, air, and sea border enforcement authorities will improve the Libyan government's ability to detect, identify, and interdict illicitly trafficked weapons of mass destruction, related items, and conventional weapons along Libya's porous borders. These activities aim to encourage interagency cooperation and promote regional and international cooperation to counter illicit trafficking in strategic items.


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