Parties to conflict in Libya agree to resume armistice negotiations

The United Nations Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said on Tuesday that the parties to the conflict in the country agreed to resume negotiations of the military committee (5 + 5).

Parties to conflict in Libya agree to resume armistice negotiations

“The UN support mission in Libya welcomes the fact that the Government of National Accord (GNA) and the Libyan National Army agreed to resume armistice negotiations in accordance with the draft agreement submitted by the UN to the parties during the negotiations of the military committee (5 + 5) on February 23”, – the statement to the mission  says.

Diplomats hope that the ceasefire will be implemented not only in words, but that negotiations will also reach a humanitarian ceasefire to give the authorities a chance to focus on combating the effects of coronavirus.

“The UN hopes to launch a new round of negotiations that will take place through a videoconference in connection with the new circumstances”, – the statement said. The mission thanked all countries that had made efforts to resume inter-Libyan negotiations.

The negotiations of the 5 + 5 military commission were held in Geneva: the commission included five senior officers from the Government of National Unity and five senior officers from the Libyan National Army. The talks were led by UN Special Envoy for Libya Hasan Salama and the head of the UN support mission in Libya. The second round of consultations ended on February 23. Salaam left his post in March, American Stephanie Turko Williams was appointed Acting Special Representative for Libya.

After the overthrow and assassination of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, Libya virtually ceased to function as a single state. Dual power reigns in the country now. The parliament elected by the people sits in the east, and in the west, in the capital Tripoli, the Government of National Accord, formed with the support of the United Nations and the European Union, rules. The authorities of the eastern part of the country operate independently of Tripoli and cooperate with the army of Marshal Khalifa Haftar.

An international conference on Libya was held in Berlin on January 19 with the participation of Russia, the USA, Turkey, Egypt and a number of other countries, as well as the EU and the UN. The main outcome of the conference was an appeal by its participants to a ceasefire in Libya and an obligation to refrain from interfering in the conflict, observing the embargo on the supply of arms to the parties. In addition, participants in the meeting proposed the creation of a ceasefire monitoring committee.

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