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UN envoy to Libya says Tunisia meeting falls short of Libyan aspirations

March 1, 2024 at 5:21 pm

Abdoulaye Bathily, UN Special Representative for Libya and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), gives a press conference in Tripoli on 11 March, 2023 [MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP via Getty Images]

The meeting of members of the Libyan House of Representatives and the High Council of State held in Tunisia earlier this week does not meet the aspirations of Libyans to bring all parties together, said UN envoy to Libya on Friday, Anadolu Agency reports.

During the meeting in Tunisia on Wednesday, around 120 Libyan figures from both Councils insisted on holding long-awaited parliamentary and presidential elections in the oil-rich country according to electoral disputed laws.

“Although the meeting falls short of this aspiration due to reservations expressed by some parties, it could be a step in the right direction, provided the higher interests of Libya are prioritised,” Abdoulaye Bathily addressed Libyan figures from both Councils following the meeting, according to an Anatolian correspondent.

He added, “Your meeting cannot serve as a substitute for broader dialogue with wider participation.”

The attendees in Tunisia agreed to form a new national government tasked with completing the electoral process, while Libyan Prime Minister, Abdul Hamid Al-Dbeibah, emphasised that he will not step down until elections are held according to “fair laws” supervised by his government.

Bathily also reiterated his desire to “bring all key parties together to find a solution to the contentious issues hindering the elections and perpetuating the crisis in Libya”.

Libyans aim for elections to resolve divisions since 2022, marked by two governments: one led by Osama Al-Hamad, appointed by the House of Representatives, and the other recognised by the UN, headquartered in Tripoli, namely the Government of National Unity led by Prime Minister Al-Dbeibah.

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