Libya this summer is to have its first national election in a generation. The government of long-time leader Moammar Gadhafi collapsed last year under pressure of civil war and a NATO-led intervention.
Despite political developments, however, there are lingering concerns about the country's human rights record and the security situation is complicated by various internal rivalries.
Faiza Patel, a U.N. expert on mercenaries, is to arrive in Libya for a four-day visit beginning Monday. She'll lead the mission, which will be the first to Libya by independent experts from the U.N. Human Rights Council.
"In addition to the question of mercenaries, we intend to obtain direct and first-hand information on the activities of private companies offering military assistance, consultancy and security services on the international market, the type of activities they undertake in Libya and their effect on the enjoyment of human rights," she said in a statement.
She said she aims to have a "fruitful" dialogue with authorities on Libya on regulations regarding the use of such companies inside the country.
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