UN concerned over military build-up in Libya amid Egyptian Army's hints of intervention

UN concerned over military build-up in Libya amid Egyptian Army's hints of intervention

July 21, 2020 - 20:16
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Written By: AbdulkaderAssad

The United Nations has appealed to all involved parties in the Libyan conflict to agree to a ceasefire, "rather than to add fuel to the fire," according to statements by the UN spokesman, Stephane Dujarric.

Dujarric said Monday there is no military solution to the current crisis in Libya and there must be an immediate ceasefire, adding that the UN was continuing to urge countries to help Libyans agree on a lasting ceasefire rather than adding oil to the fire, in a hint at the latest Egyptian Parliament mandate to its country's army to carry out combat missions abroad, especially Libya.

"We are obviously following all this extremely closely," the spokesman added, when asked about Egyptian possible military intervention in Libya to support Haftar," saying that all of these developments are of great concern to the UN.

"I think there is an alarming mobilization of forces around Sirte which in itself endangers the lives of civilians, I mean more than 125,000 civilians as far as the numbers that we had." He explained.

He said the acting Head of the UNSMIL, Stephanie Williams, was continuing her diplomatic work as she met Sunday with the Algerian president, Abdelmadjid Tebboune, and other officials in Algiers to discuss the situation, indicating that Algeria had been making positive efforts to urge Libyan parties to end the violence.

Asked if there had been any contact between the United Nations and Egypt, the spokesman said whether it's the Egyptian authorities or any other country that has an influence over the parties in Libya, he thinks they all know the UN's position, adding that their stance has been made clear to those countries privately and publicly.

The Egyptian Parliament approved Monday sending armed forces on combat missions abroad, especially on the western borders - hinting at Libya and of course at more support for Haftar's forces.

The Egyptian Parliament mandated El-Sisi to send forces abroad to protect national security, according to statements made after the closed session of the Parliament on Monday.

Egypt has always been supporting Haftar's forces military - since 2015 - while on the surface claiming to oppose foreign interference and announcing initiatives like the Cairo Declaration for ceasefire in last June.