Libya’s government intensifies national security measures

Libyan government based in capital Tripoli increases security measures after failed UN-backed unity administration says its members would head to Tripoli

Photo by: Anadolu Agency
Photo by: Anadolu Agency

Libyan Prime Minister Khalifa Ghwell addresses local media in news conference on 24 Feb, 2016.

Updated Mar 26, 2016

Libya’s government increased security measures after a proposed UN-backed unity administration, rejected by the current government, said its members would head to Tripoli.

The government is situated in the capital of Libya with another rival administration in the eastern city of Tobruk, while the proposed third administration backed by the UN has been rejected by both the Tripoli government and the eastern Tobruk administration.

Prime Minister Khalifa Ghwell asked his defence and interior ministers to take "security measures necessary to preserve the country’s stability by increasing patrols and security checks," according to a statement on the government's website.

Streets were calm on Friday morning, an Agence France Presse photographer said, with police cars deployed at their usual positions around the city, but no signs of extra security measures.

The United Nations has been pushing the Libyan government and the rival administration to surrender to a unity council under a power-sharing deal finalised in December with politician Fayez al Sarraj proposed take over as prime minister, but both the Tripoli and Tobruk authorities have rejected the plan.

The failed presidential council, headed by Sarraj, said this week that the unity-government would start work in Tripoli within the coming days.

The controversial council earlier this month said that it would take office on the basis of a petition signed by some of Libya’s lawmakers.

UN special envoy Martin Kobler was on Wednesday prevented from travelling to Tripoli to work on measures for taking over the management of the country.

The oil rich country has descended into conflict since 2011 after longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed by rebel forces.

TRTWorld and agencies