The US State Department refused on Monday to comment on a New York Timesreport, which quoted senior American officials as saying that Egypt and the UAE were behind the airstrikes on the Islamist Libyan Dawn forces in Tripoli.
Speaking at a daily press briefing, US state department spokesperson Jen Psaki said, “I’m not in a position to provide any additional information on these [air]strikes. I’d certainly refer you to the governments of Libya, Egypt and the UAE.”
She added that: “Libya’s challenges are political and violence will not resolve them. Our focus is on the political process there. We believe outside interference exacerbates current divisions and undermines Libya’s democratic transition.”
Psaki confirmed that a phone call had taken place on Sunday between US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Egyptian counterpart, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, but she did not provide any details on the subject of their discussion.
In a report published on Monday, the New York Times quoted four senior American officials as saying that “Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have secretly teamed up to launch airstrikes against Islamist-allied militias battling for control of Tripoli, Libya.” The report corroborated similar assertions by the Libyan Dawn forces, which are holding the two countries responsible for the killing of 12 militants in Tripoli last week.
Meanwhile, Cairo and Abu Dhabi have officially denied any involvement in the airstrikes.