Tags: ISIS/Islamic State | Italy | United Nations | ISIS | Rome

Italy Awaits UN Decision on Intervention Amid Increasing ISIS Fears

By    |   Tuesday, 17 Feb 2015 04:02 PM

While Italy's military has not been at full strength for years, and as few allies have stepped up to offer to defend it, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has pushed back on his early suggestion of military intervention against the Islamic State threat from nearby Libya, the Daily Beast reported.

Instead, he said Monday that Italy will wait on decisions from the United Nations on how to move ahead against the advancing terrorist threat.

"It’s not the time for a military intervention," Renzi told an Italian television station, according to the Beast.

"Our proposal is to wait for the U.N. Security Council. The strength of the U.N. is decidedly superior to that of the radical militias."

His remarks came as Italy closed its embassy in Tripoli and as fears emerged for an easy migrant-style crossing that would send jihadi fighters from Libya to the Italian island of Lampedusa, just 109 miles away, the Beast said.

Rescues of the migrants have sent ships closer to Libyan shores, making such vessels and staff an increasingly vulnerable target on the open seas.

Noted the Beast: "Last weekend, as the embassy staff made their way to Italy on a mercantile ship, 2,164 migrants left the same Libyan shores en route to Sicily. The week before, more than 300 people were lost in the same seas as their rickety fishing boats capsized before rescuers could save them."

Such increasing proximity fears of a water crossing for terrorists have sent the Italian government to dispatch about 500 anti-terrorism police officers to protect valued monuments that serve as tourist sites in Rome.

A second alarming threat are Italy's oil assets that are headquartered in Libya. While citizens have fled amid orders to leave, about 100 Italian oil company workers remain, the Beast said, noting the billion-dollar business and infrastructure that Italy has set up there.

During a mass beheading of Egyptian Coptic Christians by ISIS terrorists, one leader warned that their forces were marching steadily toward Rome, igniting fears for Italy as well as other European nations, NBC News reported. They have asked the U.N. for protection.

Libya's government, operated by rival factions, is fractious and unstable, adding to concerns. A U.S. State Department spokeswoman said the country was working to assist Libya "to find a political solution," NBC News noted after an attack on a hotel in Tripoli in January.

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While Italy's military has not been at full strength for years, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has pushed back on his early suggestion of military intervention against the Islamic State threat from nearby Libya, the Daily Beast reported.
Italy, United Nations, ISIS, Rome
394
2015-02-17
Tuesday, 17 Feb 2015 04:02 PM
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