September 19, 2011 / 6:14 PM / in 8 years

Britain's Ian Martin named head of U.N. Libya mission

U.N. special envoy Ian Martin arrives at a military airport in Tripoli September 3, 2011. REUTERS/Anis Mili

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations said on Monday it had chosen British diplomat and human rights activist Ian Martin to head its new mission in Libya.

The appointment of Martin had been expected after the United Nations last week set up a mission to help rebuild Libya after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

Martin, a former Secretary General of Amnesty International, had previously served as the U.N. special envoy on post-conflict planning for Libya. He is also a former U.N. special envoy in Nepal.

Earlier this month, Martin told Reuters the proliferation of weapons in Libya was a worry and that the new rulers needed to establish a proper police force and army to replace the many armed groups patrolling the streets.

Martin is expected to lead a mission of up to 200 U.N. staff with an initial three-month mandate. Their tasks will range from electoral assistance to police training.

The United Nations said it had appointed Finland’s Georg Charpentier, an expert on Africa, as Martin’s deputy.

Writing by Dave Graham; Editing by Doina Chiacu

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