Libya’s elected parliament has rejected a U.N. draft proposal to form a unity government to end a power struggle in the oil producing nation, a senior lawmaker said on Tuesday.
The parliament has also banned its delegates from travelling to Germany for a meeting with European and North African leaders as envisaged in a proposal from U.N. Special Envoy Bernardino Leon, the lawmaker, Tareq al-Jouroushi, told Reuters.
“A majority of deputies voted to reject the proposal,” he said by telephone from Tobruk, an eastern city where the House of Representatives is now based.
The U.N. representative to Libya reconvened delegations from Libya's rival governments on Monday to present the latest draft proposal for a unity government that is increasingly being presented as the war-torn country's last chance for stability.
After warning last week that the country was running out of money and risked ceasing to be a functional state, Bernardino Leon urged the Libyans to approve the fourth version of the draft proposal in a ceremony in Morocco.
"Today the people of Libya have their eyes on this gathering, on you, in the hope that you'll save your country and your people from protracted conflict," he said. "I am full of hope that this draft represents a fair and reasonable way forward."
Since the beginning of the year, the United Nations has facilitated a series of different negotiating tracks seeking to bring together the rival governments and warring militias tearing Libya apart.
The talks have only witnessed halting progress, however, and fighting on the ground continues to threaten efforts to bring together the rival governments.
Libya's internationally recognized government is based in the east, while a coalition of Islamists and other groups holds sway in the west. Neither has been able to triumph militarily.
Libya has increasingly become a matter for concern for Europe because it is a haven for Islamic State radicals and a jumping off point for immigrants seeking to cross the Mediterranean.
Delegates said they would adjourn to study the latest draft, which includes a power-sharing agreement and an interim government to guide the country, before reconvening in the coming days.