Libyan Tobruk government leaves UN-backed peace talks

Rival Tobruk government in Libya recalls its delegates participating in UN-backed peace talks due to disagreements over amendments to draft deal

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

United Nation envoy Bernardino Leon

Delegates for rival Tobruk government said on Tuesday that it was calling back its team from UN-backed peace talks, complaining about the amendments to a draft agreement aiming to finish their conflict.

Four years after the revolution that ousted long time leader Moammer Gaddafi, Libya remains in political tumoil and divided between two competing parliaments, General National Congress (GNC) based in capital Tripoli and its rival House of Representatives (HOR) based in eastern city of Tobruk, as UN tries to bring them together to form a unity government.

UN envoy Bernardino Leon announced on Sunday that the two sides had reached a consensus and would soon name candidates for a unity government. However, the HOR said on Tuesday it had called back their delegates for consultations over proposed amendments.

HOR lawmaker Tarek Juroushi said that ‘’The House of Represantatives have rejected the amendments that were added to the draft. Additionally, the HOR have summoned the team in Skhirat.’’

Another HOR lawmaker also confirmed the recall by saying ‘’the congress rejected the amendments added in the last round of talks, but not the draft itself.’’

Without mentioning the differences between the sides, Leon said that it was normal to have such debates in the final stages of the talks.

‘’There is still a lack of trust... I think the closer we are to the possiblity of a final agreement, the more we will see tough positions," Leon told reporters on Tuesday in the Moroccan coastal town of Skhirat.

According to Leon, rival Tobruk government delegates are not leaving the talks despite the recall from Libya.

‘’I think they will be back tomorrow or the day after tomorrow and they will continue the discussions’’ he said.

The UN and EU is pushing for a solution in Libya as the power vacuum in the country made Libya one of the centers of human trafficking as thousands of people died in the Mediterranen trying to reach Europe. 

TRTWorld and agencies