Shoukry heads to Su­dan to take part in min­is­te­rial meet­ing of Libya’s neigh­bour­ing coun­tries

Meet­ing will ad­dress re­cent up­dates in war-torn coun­try, re­view­ing joint ef­forts to end con­flict

The Daily News Egypt - - Front Page - By Fatma Lotfi

Egypt’s For­eign Min­is­ter, Sameh Shoukry, headed to Su­dan on Wed­nes­day to take part in the Min­is­te­rial Meet­ing for the Neigh­bour­ing Coun­tries of Libya, the min­istry’s state­ment said.

The meet­ing, which will take place on Thurs­day, is ex­pected to ad­dress the re­cent up­dates in the war-torn coun­try, and re­view the joint ef­forts aim­ing to re­store sta­bil­ity and se­cu­rity in Libya.

The Sudanese For­eign Min­istry said that rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Libyan gov­ern­ment of na­tional ac­cord, the UN, the EU, France, and Italy will also at­tend the dis­cus­sion.

The meet­ing is part of a se­ries of ses­sions which are reg­u­larly held be­tween the for­eign min­is­ters of Libya’s neigh­bour­ing coun­tries: Tu­nisia, Egypt, and Al­ge­ria, to re­assert the ne­ces­sity of a po­lit­i­cal so­lu­tion, bro­kered by the UN aim­ing to end the con­flict and di­vi­sion.

Ear­lier in May, the for­eign min­is­ters also met in Al­ge­ria to par­tic­i­pate in a tri­par­tite min­is­te­rial meet­ing on Libya.

Egypt high­lighted the sig­nif­i­cance of en­hanc­ing the Libyan le­git­i­mate in­sti­tu­tions, in­clud­ing the se­cu­rity forces and the mil­i­tary, to take the lead and main­tain se­cu­rity and sta­bil­ity.

Libya was sup­posed to wit­ness par­lia­men­tary and pres­i­den­tial elec­tions by the end of this year, but it seemed that hopes of re­sort­ing sta­bil­ity dashed, as the large North African coun­try is still split among var­i­ous po­lit­i­cal and armed fac­tions.

Since the fall of Muam­mar Gaddafi, Libya has re­mained in chaos, as the Is­lamic State group gained a foothold in Sirte, the birth­place of Gaddafi be­fore it was re­cap­tured in 2016.

Cur­rently, there are three gov­ern­ments and two ri­val par­lia­ments in the oil-rich coun­try, that has been suf­fer­ing from a fi­nan­cial cri­sis since 2011, due to clashes be­tween mili­tias and forces loyal to these gov­ern­ments.

Late in 2015, the UN reached an agree­ment to form a new “unity” gov­ern­ment, headed by Prime Min­is­ter Fayez Sar­raj, and based in Tripoli, while the other two gov­ern­ments re­main in the east­ern cities of Bayda and Beng­hazi.

Egypt and France are back­ing Libyan Mil­i­tary Com­man­der, Khal­ifa Haf­tar, who is based in the east and leads the Libyan Na­tional Army (LNA), con­sist­ing of for­mal army units and mili­tias loyal to him. The LNA has con­trol of Libya’s main oil ter­mi­nals.

Egypt’s For­eign Min­is­ter Sameh Shoukry

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