How to Save Libya From Itself? Protect Its Oil From Its Politics

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TRIPOLI, Libya — For years now, opportunists of all stripes, local and international, have tried to profit from Libya’s seemingly endless instability by disrupting its oil production.

The latest incident was triggered by the recent, sudden souring of relations between Qatar on the one hand and Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain on the other. One of the several groups that purport to be Libya’s rightful government is using that dispute as a pretext to seize control of the country’s oil and gas exports: It has accused the National Oil Corporation, the internationally recognized body responsible for managing these resources, of working in the service of Qatar by diverting oil revenues to it via an N.O.C. customer.

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Mindanao martial law could last a year, warns Philippine president

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has said martial law on Mindanao island could last a year, while the army fights against Islamist militants.

The violence on the southern island has left three members of the security forces dead, officials say.

Mr Duterte earlier declared martial law for 60 days on Mindanao, where Muslim rebel groups are seeking autonomy.

Some of the groups, such as the Maute, have pledged allegiance to so-called Islamic State (IS).

After announcing martial law on Tuesday, President Duterte, a Mindanao native, warned that he would be harsh in dealing with terrorism.

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The “good pirates” of Somalia

My father’s hometown of Eyl, Somalia, was once a pirate’s haven. I sat down with an ex-pirate to learn why

One morning in Eyl, Somalia, Osman, a married fisherman in his thirties, woke up with the rising of the sun. His wife and eight children, all under 14 years old, were still sleeping in the hut beneath the edge of the mountain. The ocean breathed cold. Osman had a small boat with a tiny engine. Taking a drag of his cigarette, he prepared his fishnet, got on his boat, turned the engine, and waved goodbye as his wife, pregnant with their ninth child and woken by his commotion, poked her head out of the hut. Osman took off.

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North Korea ‘ready to sink’ US aircraft carrier Vinson

North Korea is “ready to sink” a US aircraft carrier heading for the peninsula, state media have said.

A commentary in the Rodong Sinmun newspaper warned that the USS Carl Vinson could be sunk “with a single strike”.

A battle group headed by the Vinson is expected off the peninsula this week.

It was despatched by President Donald Trump amid a warning that US “strategic patience” over the North’s nuclear ambitions had come to an end.

Tension also rose after a recent failed missile test by the North and a massive military parade showing off its latest hardware.

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Piracy: Navy intensifies patrol as Frenchship visits

Posted By: Precious Igbonwelundu

To check pirates from entering Lagos waters, the Western Naval Command (WNC) has intensified patrol of its waterways.

Flag Officer Commanding  (FOC) Western Naval Command  (WNC), Rear Admiral Fergusson Bobai stated this at the command’s headquarters in Apapa when the French Naval Ship, Commandant L’HERMINIER visited Lagos.

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Source: http://thenationonlineng.net

Somali elections: Mogadishu traffic ban ahead of presidential vote

A traffic ban has been imposed and major roads sealed off in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, ahead of a presidential vote.

MPs will gather at the airport to elect a new head of state.

On Tuesday evening, suspected Al-Shabab militants launched a series of attacks, with two mortar rounds fired close to the venue where the vote will be held.

Residents in Arbacow village outside Mogadishu say jihadists attacked an African Union military base there.

More than 20 candidates are vying to become Somali president, with the top three proceeding to a second round of voting and the top two from that round going forward to a third and final vote.

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Libya says will declare force majeure at two ports over smuggling

Libya’s UN-backed government will declare force majeure on two ports to stop fuel smuggling from them, a statement from its presidential council said on Saturday.

The statement gave no details on when the measure would come into effect, but it comes after officials accused a local armed group of fuel smuggling from Zawiya port. The measure will cover Zawiya and Zuwara ports.

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Source: uk.reuters.com

Somalia: Peacekeeper Plans In Peril

The current plan is for all peacekeepers to be gone by the end of 2018. Right now most (nearly 70 percent) of the government forces are UN peacekeepers contributed by AU (African Union) members. The AU would like to get another 4,000 troops before then to crush the few thousand remaining al Shabaab and ISIL fighters and make it possible for the Somali Army (currently 11,000 troops) to take over. The AU is unlikely to muster another 4,000 troops for six months duty and it appears that Somalia will slide back into anarchy after 2018. At the moment the peacekeeper force cannot even maintain its authorized strength of 22,000.

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MAST Intelligence: Reporting and analysis on recent incidents of piracy and terrorism in the HRA

The events of October 2016 suggest that the HRA is becoming a more dangerous place than hitherto as the security framework, which has served commercial shipping so well up to now, is at the risk of being undermined by the breakdown of regional security in some of the States bordering the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean.

This report reviews and analyses the incidents in light of the recent UN Security Council report on piracy in Somalia.

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Intelligence Report: Somali pirate approach on MV 22Oct16

On the 22nd October, an MV reported being approached by a single blue open hulled skiff type vessel with 5 or 6 persons on board, in the HRA approximately 300 nm off Hobyo, Mudug, Somalia.  It is understood the MV’s embarked armed security team fired warning shots when the skiff was at 350m and that the occupants of the skiff returned fire before moving away.

Assuming that the reported vessel was a standard Somali skiff, it would have been powered by an outboard motor. Even with plenty of spare fuel drums, it is unlikely that such a vessel can operate more than 150 miles offshore without a mother vessel in support. It is therefore likely that this was part of a Somali Pirate Action Group.

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