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Libyan FM: Solution in Libya Depends on Leadership’s Commitment to Political Decision | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Supporters of Libya’s unity government hold signs during a demonstration at Martyrs’ Square in Tripoli April 1, 2016. REUTERS/Hani Amara

Malabo – Libyan Foreign Affairs Minister Mohammed Taha Siala said that the key solution to the political crisis in Libya depends on ending divisions between the political and military leaderships.

He also stressed the importance of the parliament focusing on legislative work, without seeking to have a sovereign role in the country’s political life.

During an interview with Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, Siala accused international and regional powers of supporting local political forces and preventing the establishment of a political solution to the crisis in Libya.

Asked whether the current political situation allows for more lenient stances by the different Libyan factions, the foreign affairs minister said there were several international efforts to reach a solution over the crisis, noting however that there was nothing clear in this regard.

Siala underscored efforts deployed by neighboring countries, adding that several meetings were held to unite views on the ongoing crisis. He noted that the latest meeting was held in Niger, but no concrete solutions have emerged so far from those meetings.

The Libyan foreign affairs minister stressed that joint Arab and international efforts were greatly needed. He highlighted in this regard the importance of the meeting of the African Union’s High Level Committee on Libya, which was held earlier this month in Addis Ababa.

The AU High-Level Committee’s meeting on Libya is part of meetings and international efforts for the resolution of the political and security crisis in Libya, similar to the New York meeting on 21 September and Algiers meeting on 7 December.

Asked about the current military operations on ISIS, Siala said that war on ISIS has brought about positive results, noting that militias’ activities have started to recede.

“This doesn’t mean that ISIS threat is over, as several members have moved towards the South,” he added.

The Libyan official noted that U.S. military airstrikes were highly precise, which allows the Libyan forces to achieve progress on the ground.

Asked about Libya’s demands to the 4th Africa-Arab Summit, which will kick-off on Wednesday in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, Siala said international support in form of resolutions was not enough.

He said, however, that concrete international and regional support was needed to convince Libyan factions, which are hampering the achievement of a political solution, to end the state of chaos and strengthen institutional work in the country.