The Libyan Prime Minister-designate, Fathi Bashagha, who was appointed by the Tobruk-based House of Representatives (HoR) early in March, expects to take over government in Tripoli in the coming days without using force, he told Reuters in an interview in Tunisia on Thursday.
Bashagha said that his government has direct contacts with the Libyan west, with Tripoli, the political elite and the leaders of the battalions and some societal figures, adding that: “God willing, the government will be able to carry out its duties in Tripoli in the coming days.”
Bashagha has repeatedly said he will not use force to enter the capital and told Reuters: “Our arrival in Tripoli and the government headquarters will be completely peaceful”, adding that there were indications from inside Libya and internationally that he would be able to take over in Tripoli and that Dbeibah’s government was not able to operate outside the Libyan capital.
According to Reuters, Dbeibah's oil minister has challenged the role of National Oil Corporation’s (NOC) chairman Mustafa Sanallah, as Bashagha said that any moves to restructure the board "will cause a big problem for oil production and workers in the oil sector".
Bashagha hailed both Sanallah and Central Bank of Libya’s governor Al-Siddiq Al-Kabir, who has been seen as a Dbeibah ally, saying Al-Kabir "has an important role in stability".
Bashagha said Turkish forces in Libya, invited by the previous Tripoli government, headed by Fayez Al-Sarraj, but whose presence is rejected by the eastern factions backed by the HoR, were in the country legally.
"Any military presence is governed by an agreement… we can control it and we can ask these forces to cancel the agreement or leave Libya,” Bashagha said.