London: NATO air power prevented former Libyan dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi’s forces from reaching secret stockpiles of mustard gas during the nine-month conflict in the country, it has been claimed.
According to the Telegraph, a former rebel who belonged to a special anti-chemical weapons unit has claimed that stockpiles were carefully watched from the start of the conflict, while a captured Gaddafi commander said that the threat of attack from the skies meant the dictator’s security forces were unable to get to their own stockpiles.
The claims were made as the National Transitional Council (NTC) revealed that the regime had two secret stockpiles hidden in the desert, in addition to one that it had announced several years ago to the United Nations.
Libyan expert Yussef Safi ad-Din, who was part of a special anti-chemical weapons unit based in Benghazi, said that one stockpile had contained weapons which he said were “ready for immediate military use”.
He said that during the conflict Libyan and NATO spies had watched approach roads to the stockpiles.