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Egypt voices concerns on effects of delay in Libyan political agreement
Affiliated militias pose risk of derailing a political settlement
Published in Daily News Egypt on 21 - 09 - 2015


By Emir Nader
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has voiced Egypt's concern about the delay of Libya's conflicting parties in reaching a political agreement to end the civil war, as two rival governments and numerous militias have fractured the state into lawlessness.
In July, various representatives from Libya's political forces and the House of Representatives agreed on the text of the agreement which would form the basis for a power-sharing unity government, under the auspices of the United Nations. However the completion of the deal has been halted by ongoing violence between hard-line militias.
This weekend, forces allied with the recognised government and Islamist militias engaged in fighting in the city of Benghazi, including air strikes and artillery shelling, Reuters reported.
Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ahmed Abu Zeid said in a press statement Sunday evening: "Egypt was expecting from the United Nations and influential countries on the parties in western Libya to play their part in encouraging the parties to begin the implementation of the agreement through the formation of a national unity government."
Abu Zeid maintains that the delay in the agreement contributes to the spread of terrorism in the country and prevents legitimate governance. "It is no longer acceptable for the international community to wait indefinitely for the implementation of the political agreement when tackling terrorism is a top priority, and also threatens the national security of neighbouring countries."
Abu Zeid said the delay may be intentional by parties affiliated with the Tripoli government in order to destabilise the country further and spread its influence.
In the four years since the NATO-supported removal of Muammar Gaddafi, the country has struggled to rebuild a unified state, with the Islamist Libya Dawn alliance governing in Tripoli against the internationally-recognised Tobruk government and House of Representatives.
Talks are continuing in the Moroccan city of Skhirat.


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