Wednesday, October 24, 2012

More Unexploded Ordinance in Libya - Type 314

Disarming munitions is an ongoing process in Libya, one that is likely to take years and years. Recently I came across an article about the discovery of French made cluster bombs that have been found in the west of Libya. 
C. J. Chivers/The New York Times

During the war, NATO's airstrikes repeatedly hit one of Libya's largest munition storage dumps, in an area called Ga-a, resulting in huge explosions that lasted hours and hours. Later, the munitions depot was looted by anti-Qaddafi fighters who made off with anything that they thought was useful or salable. All kinds of weapons were stored at the site, among them were French made cluster bombs named Type 314. 

C. J. Chivers/The New York Times
Little is known about how Type 314s made their way to Libya, but what is known is that so far the disposal teams working to disarm munitions in Libya haven't got a clue how the Type 314s work or how to safely defuse them. Surely France's military has this knowledge, but this information is kept in a classified ordinance disposal document database and because of military classifications this information is being withheld. This is causing a major problem for disposal technicians as they have no way of dealing with this type of munition when they are found. 

For a more in-depth article about this situation please see: French Cluster Munitions in Libya, and a Call for Help 

Or, if you have any information about Type 314s and their disposal  please contact:  thegun.book@gmail.com or  chivers@nytimes.com - anonymity will be provided. 


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