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The Strategic Importance of Africa to Arab National Security From the Perspective of Libyan Foreign Policy

ZENBOU, TAREK,RAMADAN (2010) The Strategic Importance of Africa to Arab National Security From the Perspective of Libyan Foreign Policy. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



The aim of this study is to present a new analysis of the perception of Libyan policy-makers towards Arab National Security since the 1969 Revolution. Also this study proves a link between Libyan foreign policy towards African and Arab national security. This perception has resulted in creating an in-depth strategy incorporating Africa. The study focuses on the most crucial aspects that Libya has embraced—on both the Arab and African front—to achieve its goals on the diplomatic, military, economic and political fronts.
The principal argument of the study is that Libyan policy embraces a position that Arab National Security can only be preserved through the unification of African states and the comprehensive economic development of continent’s countries to enable them to combat the dangers and threats of major external actors.
Thus, Libya relies on historical, cultural, geographic and religious ties that link Arabs and Africans. Libya also relies on the similar circumstances facing African states—be they Arab or non-Arab—from external threats that usually occur from ex-colonialists. Libya believes that most of the external threats to the African continent occur because of the weakness and fragmentation of African states.
The research studies Libya’s role in the ten years to 2009 as a crucial regional actor in Africa, Libya’s achieved several positive outcomes in the continent, both economically and politically. In addition, it assesses Libya’s success in gathering African support to end the Western-backed and UN-imposed sanctions on Libya.
This study also argues that the African success in ending the sanctions on Libya strengthened the Arab support for Libyan efforts to establish the African Union as a strategic depth for the Arab region. This was evident through the fact that most Arab states in Africa joined the CEN-SAD economic community, which Libya established as a step to increase economic cooperation in the face of global alliances. Furthermore, Arab states immediately joined the African Union which Libya called for in 1999.
Libya’s political ambitions towards Africa were portrayed in Libya’s success in transforming the Organisation of African Union into the African Union, which in turn changed foreign states’ perceptions of Libya. Libya became an important player both in Africa and on the global institutional level.
This study examines Libya’s ability to be a regional player, it also examines Libya’s ability to transform theoretical goals into tangible realities. This study finds this was achieved principally through Africa’s ability to end Western hegemony—portrayed through the ending of Libyan sanctions—and establishing the African Union. Libya perceives the Union as the most crucial instrument in preserving African and Arab security.
This study has shown the linkage between Libyan foreign policy and the issue of Arab national security within the framework of African continent, which makes it an original study in the field.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Government and International Affairs, School of
Thesis Date:2010
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:14 Jul 2010 11:09

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