UN Security Council urges quick ceasefire in Libya

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The United Nations Security Council called Tuesday on Libya’s warring sides to reach a ceasefire that would pave the way for a political process aimed at ending conflict in the oil-rich state.

“We need to move to a ceasefire, and from the ceasefire, we need to move to a real political process and we are not yet there,” said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at the end of the Security Council meeting.

The UN meeting followed up on a weekend Libya summit held in Berlin, which saw the formation of a military commission tasked with turning an existing fragile ceasefire into a permanent truce.

The commission is set to meet in the coming days and will comprise of five members each from the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli led by Fayez al-Sarraj and its opponents from the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by General Khalifa Haftar, with the aim of reaching a ceasefire agreement.

Since April last year, the Turkish-backed GNA in Tripoli has fought against an offensive by the LNA, which is reportedly supported by several countries including Russia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and France.

The country remains in deadlock, with the LNA blocking oil exports from Libya’s main ports to deprive the GNA of a key source of income in a move to protest Turkey’s decision to send troops to back the GNA.

“There’s still a long way to go,” said Guterres.

- With AFP

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