Libyan rivals reach agreements on leadership of key positions
BOUZNIKA, Morocco – Delegates from Libya’s two rival administrations announced late Tuesday that the second round of talks in the Moroccan city of Bouznika culminated in agreements on the criteria to select heads of “sovereign positions” (leadership of key institutions) in the country.
The delegates also noted that the understandings must open the path for Libya’s constitutional institutions “to move forward with procedures for renewing the structures of sovereign institutions.”
The dialogue, which began in Bouznika in September, has five participants from the Government of National Accord (GNA) based in Tripoli, and five from the House of Representatives (HoR) based in the eastern city of Tobruk.
“The achievements of the rounds of dialogue in the Kingdom of Morocco between the delegations of the two councils constitute an asset that can be built upon to bring Libya to stability and end the state of division,” Moroccan news agency MAP reported Tuesday night.
The delegations said in a statement at the conclusion of the second round of negotiations that began Friday that the negotiations “culminated in reaching comprehensive understandings about the controls, mechanisms and criteria for selecting leadership positions for sovereign institutions, as stipulated in Article 15 of the Political Agreement” concluded in the Moroccan town of Skhirat in 2015.
The statement indicated that “the two delegations put the record of the issues of consensus that were reached in the first and second rounds, at the disposal of the House of Representatives and the State’s Supreme Council, to move forward with the procedures for renewing the structures of sovereign institutions.”
Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita confirmed that the agreements reached by the Libyan delegations at the end of the second round of the Libyan dialogue sessions in Bouznika are “decisive” when it comes to the selection of the heads of sovereign positions in accordance with Article 15 of the Skhirat Agreement.
In statements made during a news conference, Bourita said that the agreements were included in a report that will be submitted to the presidents of the State’s Supreme Council and the House of Representatives, noting the “positive spirit” that prevailed during the talks.
Before reading the final statement, Youssef Al-Aqouri, head of the delegation of the House of Representatives in Tobruk, said that the minutes of the agreements “we included in a report that will be submitted to our councils to say their last word.”
He expressed his wishes that “these efforts will culminate in the approval of the two councils and thus end the existing institutional division.”
The final statement affirmed the two parties’ determination to “continue their consultative meetings in the Kingdom of Morocco to coordinate the work of political, executive and oversight institutions to ensure the end of the transitional period.”
The first round of talks in Bouznika took place in early September at the initiative of the Kingdom of Morocco, which hosted peace talks under the auspices of the United Nations in Skhirat in 2015, during which the parties to the conflict reached a political agreement that allowed for the formation of the Government of National Accord (GNA).
The final statement considered that the conclusion of the two rounds of dialogue in Bouznika is “an asset that can be built upon to bring the country to stability and end the state of institutional division,” noting that the political process in Libya “still needs clear and real support from the international community.”
In August, Libyan rivals announced a ceasefire.
In early September, consultations between Libyans in Montreux, Switzerland, paved the way for new progress by reaching an agreement to hold elections within 18 months.
Negotiations also began in Egypt between military representatives from both sides at the end of September, paving the way for a permanent ceasefire.
Acting UN envoy to Libya Stephanie Williams said Monday that the United Nations is now preparing for a “series of meetings and consultations” to facilitate the resumption of talks with the aim of reaching a “comprehensive political agreement.”