Libya’s conflicting sides moving closer to formation of unified gov’t bodies – Lavrov

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Moscow, Dec. 30, 2020 Libya’s conflicting sides are bringing closer their approaches to the formation of unified authorities and the preparation of elections, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Wednesday.

Lavrov said this at a news conference after a meeting with the foreign minister of Libya’s UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), Mohamed Siala.

“It is important that the October ceasefire agreement made it possible to intensify efforts on the political track.

“In this regard, we noted the first round of the Libyan national dialogue forum held in Tunis in November.

“The dialogue ended with the rapprochement of the sides’ approaches to the ways of forming temporary unified authorities and preparing for holding general elections,” Lavrov said.

The participants of the 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission, which brings together representatives from Libya’s rival parties for UN-mediated talks, agreed to a permanent ceasefire on Oct. 23.

In November, the commission agreed upon stabilising the ceasefire and adopting a number of measures that contribute to the stability of the military situation and security throughout Libya.

The most important terms of the agreement were the expulsion of mercenaries from the country and the cessation of arms supplies to Libya by Turkey.

Libya has been split between two rival administrations since the overthrow and murder of its longtime leader, Muammar Gaddafi.

The western part of the country is controlled by the GNA, backed by Turkey and Qatar, while the eastern one is governed by the Tobruk-based parliament and the Libyan National Army, which are supported by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.

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