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Arab League, Haftar show support for UN plan on Libya

Khalifa Haftar (R), Libyan army Field Marshall and Fayez Al-Sarraj (L), Libya’s Presidency Council head [File photo]
Khalifa Haftar (R), Libyan army Field Marshall and Fayez Al-Sarraj (L), Libya’s Presidency Council head [File photo]

The Arab League has come out in support of the action plan put forward by UN envoy Ghassan Salamé to solve the Libyan crisis by focusing on the amendments based on the Libyan Political Agreement as the only way forward.

Speaking in Cairo yesterday, Presidency Council head Fayez Al-Sarraj discussed the strategy with Arab League head Ahmed Aboul Gheit including plans for a constitutional referendum and legislative elections to be held next year.

Al-Sarraj also warned of the problems Salamé faced in bringing Libyan leaders to the negotiating table.

Aboul Gheit reiterated the League’s commitment to resolving Libya’s crises and in bringing together state institutions and restoring security to the country.

According to the League’s spokesman, Aboul Gheit was briefed on the Presidency Council’s efforts to deal with the “burdens” of illegal migration and the measures undertaken to investigate the allegations of the migrant slave trade in Libya.

Al-Sarraj also met with members of the Libyan community in Egypt and held discussions around the difficulties faced by some in obtaining residency visas and keeping up with costs as well as finding work.

Read more: Libya mass grave discovered near Benghazi

Head of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar held talks yesterday in Rome with Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano on the situation in Libya. Both men reportedly agreed that Salamé’s action plan had to be supported.

They also agreed that elections next year were essential, however Haftar stressed the importance of the LNA defending Libyans from the threat of terrorism and its role as a unifying force in the country.

Haftar has maintained that if there was no substantive progress on amending the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA) by the end of the month and the formation of a new government then it would be up to the LNA to solve the country’s crisis.

Alfano reiterated the same view as the UN and various western governments regarding the LPA which previously outlined the expiry date for the Presidency Council and the House of Representatives to be 17 December. However since the agreement has not yet officially been accepted, it cannot be applied.

Haftar last visited Rome in September when he met with Italian chief of defence staff General Claudio Graziano and interior minister Marco Minniti who he held talks with in Benghazi a couple of weeks before.

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