The head of Libya’s unity government said on Sunday he had reopened the main coast road across the frozen front line, a gesture of progress in the fragile peace process, but eastern forces said the road remained closed.
Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibeh’s move to reopen the road is in line with a ceasefire deal agreed last year as part of efforts to resolve Libya’s decade of chaos and violence.
It comes days before international powers meet in Berlin to discuss the Libya crisis and progress towards unifying the country’s fragmented institutions and holding elections planned for December.
Dbeibeh removed a mound of sand blocking the road at the final checkpoint on the western side of front line, before driving eastwards with his convoy towards Sirte, held by eastern forces.
Libya, a major North African oil producer, has had little peace or stability since the NATO-backed rising against Former Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi in 2011 and a split in 2014 between warring eastern and western factions.