Efforts to freeze Gaddafi assets meet resistance: Report

EU and US have already hit Gaddafi targets with their own sanctions.

Last Updated: Apr 24, 2011, 23:50 PM IST

Los Angeles: The international drive to
freeze the Libyan regime`s foreign assets is running into
stiff resistance in many parts of the world, The Los Angeles
Times reported on Sunday.

As a result, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi is able to
dig into a vast hoard of cash that has moved abroad, the daily
said.

Gaddafi and his immediate family already top a list of
18 individuals banned from leaving Libya and 13 people and
five entities whose international assets have been frozen by
two UN Security Council resolutions passed in February and
March.

The European Union and United States have already hit
Gaddafi targets with their own sanctions.

But The Times said that although Washington and
Brussels have blocked access to more than USD 60 billion in
Libya`s overseas bank accounts and investments, other nations
have done little or nothing to freeze tens of billions more
that Gaddafi and his family spread around the globe over the
last decade.

Gaddafi has moved billions of dollars back to Tripoli
since the rebellion began in mid-February, the report said,
citing unnamed officials.

The precise totals are unknown, in part because
investigators believe the Libyan ruler has made significant
investments in companies and financial institutions that
shield his identity, the paper noted.

Several countries that have developed strong economic
ties to Libya, including Turkey and Kenya, along with several
other African nations, have balked at carrying out the freeze,
The Times said.

Meanwhile, India, China and Russia have resisted US
and European efforts to expand the sanctions, the paper noted.

Other countries with no apparent political or economic
ties to Tripoli have made no attempt to identify or block
access to Libyan assets, according to The Times. In some
cases, the governments may lack the technical capability to
trace hidden assets.

Bureau Report