AA / Algiers
The neighboring countries of Libya decided, at the end of their meeting on Tuesday evening, to send there a “ministerial delegation”, to meet with all the parties, in order to assess the political process leading up to the planned elections. December 24th.
This is what emerges from the Final Declaration, made public at the end of a meeting at the level of foreign ministers of the countries of the Libyan neighborhood, hosted by Algeria for two days, with the participation of Libya, from Egypt, Chad, Niger, Sudan, Tunisia and the Republic of Congo.
The Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, the Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary General in Libya, Ján Kubiš, and the Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security of the African Union, Bankole Adeoye, also took part in this meeting.
The Final Declaration indicated that the foreign ministers of the countries neighboring Libya, had agreed to “coordinate their collective efforts towards all the Libyan parties to end the crisis, in accordance with the process established by the UN”.
For years, this oil-rich country endured armed conflict. With the support of Arab and Western countries, Haftar’s militia, made up of mercenaries and foreign fighters, contested the former internationally recognized Libyan government for legitimacy and authority over the country.
The ministers agreed that a ministerial delegation would visit Libya (without specifying a date for this) to express its solidarity with the brotherly Libyan people and to meet with all the Libyan parties, with the aim of evaluating the process. policy ahead of the elections scheduled for later this year, says the Final Declaration.
A way out of the crisis has been looming in Libya since the government of national unity and the new Presidential Council took office on March 16, 2021, to lead the country to the legislative and presidential elections scheduled for December 24.
The ministers condemned “the continued flow of arms and mercenaries to armed groups, in blatant violation of the UN arms embargo, as well as the deliberate attempts to divide Libyans to undermine all efforts to resolve the crisis in Libya ”.
They also called for the withdrawal of all foreign forces, foreign fighters and mercenaries, in accordance with Security Council resolution 2570 and as stipulated in the permanent ceasefire agreement, with the need to fully include neighboring countries in the talks or processes launched in this regard.
They also underlined the imperative to “concretely implement the main priorities of the agreed roadmap, in particular with regard to the conduct of the elections on the scheduled date, in accordance with Security Council resolution 2570 and the recommendations of the Berlin II Conference and the roadmap emanating from the Inter-Libyan Political Dialogue Forum ”.
Due to disagreements among its members, the Inter-Libyan Political Dialogue Forum failed to agree on a constitutional basis for the elections, given the impossibility of holding a popular referendum on a proposed new Constitution for the country.
Foreign ministers urged the relevant Libyan institutions to “agree on a legal and constitutional basis for this purpose, oust foreign forces, foreign fighters and mercenaries, unify the military institution and achieve national reconciliation”.
General Khalifa Haftar continues to operate independently of the legitimate government and leads an armed militia, calling himself “Commander-in-Chief of the Libyan Army”, disregarding the Supreme Army Commander and Chairman of the Libyan Presidential Council , Mohamed Al-Manfi.
The ministers also called for “applying the quadripartite agreement between Libya and neighboring countries to secure common borders”.
They welcomed Egypt’s offer to host the next meeting of foreign ministers from countries neighboring Libya on a date to be agreed later.
At the end of the work of the meeting, the Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ramtane Lamamra, declared during a press conference with his Libyan counterpart, “The meeting was a success, and we want it to be an added value. support efforts for the brotherly Libyan people, because the essential remains the interest of Libya and the support of its people ”.
“The neighboring countries of Libya have the right to insist on the withdrawal of foreign forces and mercenaries (…) and the parties (without naming them) who brought them to Libya, must send them back to where they are venus ”, declared the head of the Algerian diplomacy.
For her part, the Libyan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Najla al-Mangoush, declared, “The meeting in Algiers confirmed that the unification of the efforts of the countries neighboring Libya is inevitable, and aims to achieve several objectives, including the most important are border security, food security and development ”.
On the possibility of holding the elections on schedule, Al-Mangoush replied that “the elections are the subject of the hour, and we have tried to do our duty”, and the head of Libyan diplomacy to question “Is it possible to keep them on schedule, in light of current data and the many challenges, particularly in terms of security and economics?”
* Translated from Arabic by Majdi Ismail
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