Libya rivals urged to sign peace deal

2015-10-09 18:05
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Tripoli - World leaders urged Libya's warring parties on Friday to sign a proposed peace deal installing a national unity government, after a cool response from some lawmakers in the country's rival parliaments.

Libya has had two administrations since August last year when a militia alliance that includes Islamists overran the capital, forcing the internationally recognised government to take refuge in the east.

The country descended into chaos after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi  in 2011, with the two sides vying for power as well as several groups battling for control of its vast resource wealth.

Warring factions

The new government proposed by UN envoy Bernardino Leon would be headed by Fayez el-Sarraj, a deputy in the Tripoli parliament and include three deputy prime ministers, one each from the west, east and south of the country.

A graduate in business management, Sarraj has been involved in dialogue that tried to bring together the various actors of Libyan society to end the crisis.

"After a year of work in this process, after working with more than 150 Libyan personalities from all the regions... finally the moment has come in which we can propose a national unity government," Leon told a news conference in Morocco.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon welcomed the news, and appealed to warring factions to sign the accord.

He urged Libya's leaders "not to squander this opportunity to put the country back on the path to building a state that reflects the spirit and ambitions of the 2011 revolution.

"Now is the time for the parties to the political dialogue to endorse this proposal and sign the agreement without delay."

Restore stability

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said the proposal "represents a genuine opportunity for the parties to resolve the political and security situation in Libya".

European Council President Donald Tusk also urged to the rival camps to accept it.

"I strongly encourage all the parties not to waste that opportunity. Libya has too few opportunities for lasting peace," Tusk said during a visit to Bulgaria.

Previous deals to ensure a ceasefire and restore stability to the strife-torn country have fallen apart and officials from both sides expressed scepticism after the announcement.

Read more on:    un  |  muammar gaddafi  |  libya  |  north africa

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