BRUSSELS, September 6 (RIA Novosti)
Al-Qaeda's North African branch has acquired weapons in Libya, EU counter-terrorism coordinator Gilles de Kerchove said at a news conference.
The turmoil in Libya allowed members of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) to gain access to weapons, including small arms, machine guns and surface to air missiles, which pose a risk to flights over the territory.
Kerchove also said that although the threat of attacks by Al-Qaeda followers has decreased, AQIM is taking root on the Arab peninsula and in Africa.
AQIM has expanded from northern Niger, Mali and Mauritania into northern Nigeria and southern Senegal, he said.
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The main event of the third day of the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi was the closing session with President Vladimir Putin. The atmosphere was calm and open, despite the current political tensions and the Russia-West confrontation. The Russian president said that it corresponded to the spirit of the Valdai Club.