UAE says ready to cooperate on Libya conflict

“There is an urgent need for renewed diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict in Libya”, Lana Nusseibeh, the UAE ambassador to the UN, said in a letter.
Saturday 30/01/2021
A file picture shows Faiez Mustafa Sarraj, President of the Presidency Council of the Government of National Accord of Libya, speaking virtually during the 75th annual UN General Assembly. (AFP)
A file picture shows Faiez Mustafa Sarraj, President of the Presidency Council of the Government of National Accord of Libya, speaking virtually during the 75th annual UN General Assembly. (AFP)

NEW YORK – UNITED NATIONS – The United Arab Emirates issued a statement Friday stating its readiness to work “closely” with the new US administration for a peaceful solution to the conflict.

“There is an urgent need for renewed diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict in Libya”, Lana Nusseibeh, the UAE ambassador to the UN, said in a letter.

“The UAE stands ready to work closely with all Security Council members, including the new US administration, to achieve a peaceful settlement for the Libyan people”, she said.

She said the country welcomed the Security Council’s “call for all foreign forces to withdraw from Libya. Foreign intervention in the conflict must end now”.

The day before, during a virtual meeting of the Security Council on Libya, the United States called on “all external parties” to respect Libyan sovereignty and immediately “cease all military intervention in Libya”.

Together with Egypt and Russia, the UAE is one of the main backers of Khalifa Haftar, the commander of the Libyan National Army in the east of Libya who is fighting the UN-supported Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli.

“The UAE firmly believes that diplomatic and political solutions are the sole path to end the Libyan conflict, Nusseibeh said.

“The first priority is to preserve and reinforce the ceasefire agreement” agreed to in October, she said.

“This will enable and encourage a political process and a Libyan-led transition that fulfils the aspirations of the Libyan people for stability, peace, and prosperity”, she added.

In a declaration adopted unanimously Thursday by the 15 Security Council members — including Russia — the panel “called for the withdrawal of all foreign fighters and mercenaries from Libya without further delay”.

The UN says the arms embargo is being violated as cargo planes arrive with weapons for the two warring sides.

“This blatant foreign interference continues”, said acting UN envoy Stephanie Williams, while noting that a ceasefire was still in place.

UN-sponsored talks among the two sides in Libya are expected to resume in the near future in Geneva. Libya is scheduled to hold elections in December.