Libya: Parties Prepared for Peace in Precarious Predicament

  • “These talks in Geneva are meant to listen carefully to the position of the two sides on what are the conditions for them to accept this translation of the truce into a permanent and lasting ceasefire.”
  • Representatives of the two sides were present separately during the Libyan summit in Geneva and last month's summit in Berlin.
  • Economic talks begin February 9 in Cairo, with political talks thereafter in Geneva.

News sources on Tuesday released a report from Geneva announcing progress in the Libyan peace talks. The issue is about a permanent ceasefire in the war-torn country. With the mediation of the United Nations, all parties involved in the civil war in Libya have agreed on the need for a “permanent and lasting” ceasefire to replace an uncertain truce. However, the terms of each party’s acceptance and implementation of the ceasefire are subject to discussion by their representatives.

Ghassan Salamé is a Paris-based Lebanese academic. He served as the Lebanese Minister of Culture from 2000 to 2003. On 22 June 2017, Salamé was appointed Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya, replacing Martin Kobler.

Ghassan Salamé, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya told reporters “these talks in Geneva are meant to listen carefully to the position of the two sides on what are the conditions for them to accept this translation of the truce into a permanent and lasting ceasefire.”At the Geneva summit, there are five delegates from the Libyan government, a government recognized by the United Nations. Five delegates have also been sent by the Libyan National Army led by Khalifa Haftar.

It should be noted that representatives of the two sides were present separately during the Libyan summit in Geneva and last month’s summit in Berlin. Ghassan Salamé has expressed hope that this and the next two meetings, which will take place in the coming days, will provide the grounds for a joint meeting of representatives of the two warring groups.

Geneva Summit

The Libyan summit began in Geneva on Monday, and still continues. Ghassan Salamé has said that the parties involved in the Libyan war appear to be ready to negotiate and find a solution to the Libyan political crisis. The Geneva summit follows the January talks in Berlin. At that meeting, countries involved in the Libyan civil war were urged to refrain from interfering in the country’s internal situation and to abide by the prohibition on arms to those involved in the war.

Field Marshal Khalifa Belqasim Haftar is a Libyan-American military officer and the head of the Libyan National Army (LNA), which, under Haftar’s leadership, replaced nine elected municipal councils by military administrators, and as of May 2019, was engaged in the Second Libyan Civil War.

The UN’s Special Envoy for Libyan Affairs has said that the parties involved in the civil war will continue their talks, and commence negations for economic cooperation in Cairo on February 9. Thereafter, political talks on the Libyan crisis will be held in Geneva. Ghassan Salamé has announced that the Geneva meeting is expected in two weeks. He also called on the international community to examine the blockade of oil facilities by General Haftar’s forces.

Libya was plunged into a political crisis and civil war after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2008. The forces affiliated with the Libyan National Army, led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, succeeded in conquering large parts of eastern and southern Libya. An attack on the Libyan capital, Tripoli, last April brought a new dimension to the military crisis in Libya.

French-Turkish Mutual Accusations

Less than two weeks after the Libyan conference in Berlin, French President Emmanuel Macron sharply criticized Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to Macron, Turkey is not living up to its promise not to interfere in the affairs of the troubled Libyan state. The French president viewed the issue as a “blatant violation” of what was agreed in Berlin.

During the Libyan conference held in January in Berlin, the two countries and the international organization that attended the meeting pledged to abide by the Libyan arms embargo and tighter controls. Alongside this, it was determined that the current ceasefire should be sustainable.

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George Mtimba

George clarifies how the news is changing the world, how world news trends affect you. Also, George is a professional journalist, a freelance news reporter and writer who is passionate with current world news.

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