Dec. 12 - Libyan and U.S. bomb disposal experts uncover and disable almost 5,000 surface-to-air missiles, remnants from Muammar Gaddafi's arsenal. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
Nearly 5, 000 portable surface-to-air missiles once part of the arsenal of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi have been discovered and disabled by Libyan and U.S. bomb disposal experts. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for political and military affairs Andrew Shapiro announced the news on a trip to watch some of the weapons being blown up near the village of Sidi Bin Nur. In November Shapiro said he had no estimate of how many of the missiles were missing but that Libya was believed to have had around 20, 000 when the war against Gaddafi began. The U.S. has been collaborating with Libya's interim leadership in a mission to find the weapons. The United Nations Security Council had been pressing Libya's government to do everything possible to track down the shoulder-fired missiles to keep them out of the hands of al Qaeda and other militant groups. The U.N. said the proliferation of Libyan arms "could fuel terrorist activities". Security Council diplomats have said privately that some of Libya's loose weapons may have already found their way to the Darfur region of Sudan and been transferred to anti-government fighters in other parts of the country.