NATO allow weapons to Rebels OPENLY
Telegraph August 12th, 2011
Arms controls continue to be flouted in the context of the Libyan armed conflict. Both France and Qatar have openly admitted to supplying arms to the rebels as a complementary strategy to the NATO-led air strikes. Such actions not only undermine the United Nations arms embargo regime, but may also violate contractual obligations between arms-exporting and arms-importing states.
When arms are officially exported from one government to another, the recipient government is usually required to endorse an end-user certificate. This is a written commitment from the arms-purchasing government that it will not transfer the arms to other parties, especially if such a transfer is in violation of a UN arms embargo. However, there is no international end-user monitoring and enforcement process in place. Monitoring is the sole preserve of the exporting state, but such monitoring is typically under-developed, with the US ‘Blue Lantern’ programme being the most advanced.
Qatar’s arming of the Libyan rebels is particularly problematic as Qatar imports the vast majority of its arms, and hence would have been required to endorse end-user certificates. Over the past five years Qatar’s main arms supplier has been the United States (in monetary terms), but it has also imported arms from many other states, such as France, the United Kingdom, Russia, Italy, Switzerland, the Netherlands and South Africa. The key question to be asked is, to what extent has Qatar reneged on end-user agreements?