Escalating Conflict in Libya Stalls Peace Talks

UN-recognized prime minister of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj visits Tripoli port following the port attack UN-recognized prime minister of Libya Fayez al-Sarraj visits Tripoli port following the port attack Mahmud Turkia/AFP

20 February 2020

Libya’s UN-backed Government of National Accord withdraws from peace talks after rocket attacks in Libya’s capital, Tripoli 

Renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army forces shelled a port in Tripoli on Tuesday. Since launching an offensive to capture the city last April, more than 1,000 people have been killed and the fighting has displaced more than 140,000 others according to the UN. 

Libya has suffered from instability since 2011 when the NATO-backed civil war removed dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Involvement by foreign powers has further complicated the power struggle. The UN-backed government, which holds the capital of Tripoli and other western territories in the country, is backed by Turkey as well as Qatar and Italy, both to a lesser degree. France, Russia, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt support the rival Haftar government. 

A conference in Berlin, Germany on January 19 had initially set up a joint military commission to negotiate in Geneva. There, international leaders promised to honor a UN arms embargo as well as to end outside involvement in the ongoing conflict. Another meeting was scheduled for February 26 in Geneva, but the Government of National Accord has backed out due to the attacks.

"There can be no peace under the bombing," the UN-backed Government of National Accord said according to the BBC. "We are announcing the suspension of our participation in the military talks taking place in Geneva until firm positions are adopted against the aggressor [Gen Haftar]."

This is the most recent in a string of truce violations that came into effect in January 2020. 

 

To read more, visit: 

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/02/libya-gna-ceasefire-talks-overtaken-tripoli-attacks-200219135632539.html

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-51557970

https://news.yahoo.com/un-impact-long-libya-war-013933600.html

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/02/libya-lna-tripoli-port-attack-targeted-turkish-weapons-200219071256349.html

 

Author: Rachel Warner; Editor: Teagan Foti 

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