Germany, France, Italy threaten sanctions over foreign interference in Libya

The leaders of France, Italy and Germany said on Saturday that "all foreign actors" should stop interfering in Libya and they are prepared to impose sanctions on those violating the United Nations arms embargo on the country.

"We call on all foreign actors to cease their interference and respect the arms embargo established by the United Nations Security Council", German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said in a joint statement.

"We are ready to consider the possible use of sanctions should breaches to the embargo at sea, on land or in the air continue," the leaders said, adding they were looking forward to top European Union officials coming up with "proposals" for the restrictions.

International observers worry that the Libyan conflict is in danger of spiralling into a full-blown proxy war, with the involvement of various regional players.

Ties between NATO allies France and Turkey have soured in recent weeks over Ankara’s alleged targeting of a French frigate with naval radars in mid-June as it sought to inspect a Turkish-escorted cargo ship suspected of smuggling weapons to Libya.