After long negotiations the United Nations has proposed a national unity deal between the two divided parliaments of Libya.
Libya has been divided into two parliaments - one in the capital Tripoli, known as the General National Congress (GNC), and another in the eastern town of Tobruk known as the House of Representatives (HoR). Each parliament is backed by its own militia.
The two rival factions have been clashing for power ever since former leader Muammar Gaddafi was killed in October 2011.
The ongoing power-struggle between the two parliaments has disrupted Libya’s oil production and allowed refugees to take advantage of the security vacuum in the country to use it as a departure point from which they attempt to make the dangerous voyage across the Mediterranean Sea into Europe.
As a result, hundreds have drowned in the Mediterranean, while thousands have successfully made it across, contributing to Europe’s worst refugee crisis since World War II.
The Tripoli government has been in power since last year. It was established by an armed faction named Libya Dawn, which reinstated the GNC parliament.
Western powers have backed UN-sponsored peace proposal as the only solution to endless war.
The deal was proposed by former UN envoy Bernardino Leon on October 8 and includes a list of candidates for key positions in the new body.
Moderates inside both two groups (GNC and HoR) have accepted the UN agreement which was signed last Sunday. However, hardliners have insisted on opposing any deal.
"I encourage those who still oppose to join the majority; the remaining questions can be addressed after forming the new government," UN envoy Martin Kobler said in a statement late on Monday.
"I have met today the two delegations of HOR and GNC, who signed a declaration in Tunis yesterday. I urged them to join the process; Libyan people cannot tolerate any more delay."
"This is a historic moment the Libyans were waiting for, the Arabs were waiting for and the world was waiting for," said Awad Mohammed Abdul Sadiq, the first deputy head of the Tripoli-based General National Congress (GNC).
“If this solution receives real Libyan support – from the people and institutions – we will surely arrive in no more than two weeks or a month to a solution to solve the political crisis," Abdul Sadiq said in a press conference.
Western governments and Libyan leaders will meet in Rome next week in order to seal the agreement between the two factions.
Acording to its opponents, the UN-backed proposal does not deal with issues such as balance of power and security arrangements.