Libya's Tobrouk parliament extends mandate to 'avoid vacuum'

Libya’s Tobrouk parliament extends mandate due on Oct. 20, attempt likely to cause tension between factions in Libya

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Libya has been sliding deeper into chaos, worrying Western powers who fear it will become a failed state just over the Mediterranean Sea from mainland Europe.

Libya’s Tobrouk parliament (HOR) has voted to extend its mandate on Monday, in an attempt likely to cause a tension towards the UN’s effort to broker a sustainable peace amid turmoil between Tobrouk and the Tripoli based parliaments. 

The United Nations has been mediating a peace talk between the two rival parliaments to unite them as one government. Terms have been negotiated before the end of the mandate on Oct. 20, to avoid the country falling into even deeper crises. 

The House of Representatives spokesman Faraj Hashem announced that the parliament had voted to extend its mandate before a new elected body took over power.

Hashem also said the Tobrouk parliament is still supporting the UN-backed peace talk as its delegates were present in a meeting with the UN envoy in the Moroccan city of Skhirat on Monday.

A lawmaker Tarek Juroushi told Reuters that "The HOR has amended the constitutional declaration to extend its mandate to avoid a vacuum in the country." 

There was no official responds from the rival parliament, known as the GNC based in Tripoli. However the move is likely to cause tension between two parliaments, hardly to get the Tripoli faction to agree on a national unity government and control hardliners resisting a peace deal.

"What the HOR has done sends a negative message," one GNC member told Reuters requesting his name not to be mentioned because the GNC members planned to meet to decide on their official position. 

Four years after the revolution that ousted long time leader Moammer Gaddafi, Libya remains in political turmoil 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 Tobrouk, as the UN tries to bring them together to form a unity government.

TRTWorld and agencies