Egypt FM, UN envoy discuss political settlement in Libya

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Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry has met with newly appointed UN special envoy for Libya Jan Kubis in Cairo, where they discussed the Libyan crisis and ways of achieving a political settlement in the war-torn country, said the Egyptian Foreign Ministry.

During the meeting, Shoukry highlighted the necessity of continuing the current political path through holding the meeting of the House of Representatives to discuss the government formation, said Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Hafez in a statement.

The Egyptian foreign minister also stressed Egypt’s keenness on holding the Libyan elections in accordance with constitutional rules as scheduled on 24th December this year, according to the statement.

“The foreign minister also stressed the need for all parties to implement the provisions of the ceasefire agreement, especially those related to the removal of foreign forces and mercenaries from Libya,” Hafez said.

Shoukry also reiterated the importance of confronting any attempt that would obstruct the unification of the Libyan security institutions or maintain the Libyan division, stressing the need for economic reforms to coincide with the political path in Libya in order to achieve “a comprehensive settlement of the Libyan crisis.”

For his part, Kubis briefed Shoukry on the results of his contacts with the various parties concerned with the Libyan issue, appreciating Cairo’s position in support of a political solution in Libya, Hafez added.

Egypt’s resort city of Hurghada has recently hosted a couple of meetings of the Libyan Constitutional Committee with the participation of delegations from the House of Representatives and the High Council of State to discuss and agree on the constitutional arrangements necessary for later elections.

The meetings led the Libyan rivals earlier this year to reach a UN-brokered agreement on a constitutional roadmap to pave the way for a constitutional referendum in preparation for the elections.

In June last year, Cairo announced an initiative to end the Libyan internal conflict, which included implementing a ceasefire between Libyan rivals, disbanding militias, pulling out foreign forces, electing a presidential council representing all Libyans and drafting a constitutional declaration to regulate elections for later stages.

Libya has been locked in a civil war since the ouster and killing of former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

The situation escalated in 2014, splitting power between two rival governments: the UN-backed Government of National Accord based in the capital Tripoli and another in the north-eastern city of Tobruk allied with eastern-based military commander Khalifa Haftar.

Hauwa Mustapha

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