UN denies support for forming new gov’t in Libya

UN denies support for forming new gov’t in Libya

Oil-rich Libya has remained in turmoil since 2011

By Mohamed Artemah

TRIPOLI, Libya (AA) – The UN mission in Libya on Thursday denied reports about supporting the formation of a new government in the war-torn country.

In a statement, the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) called on Libyan rivals to refrain from any actions that could threaten the “fragile stability” in the country.

Local media reports emerged on Wednesday about UN envoy Abdoulaye Bathily’s desire to form a new government in Libya, in an effort to resolve the conflict in the country.

“UNSMIL notes false online reports that SRSG Bathily plans to announce a new roadmap, including a new government,” the mission said in a statement.

“This sort of fake news is aimed at generating confusion about the current political process and in particular the role of UNSMIL which is not to impose but to support a Libyan-Libyan solution,” it added.

The UN mission called on all parties “to refrain from any actions that could threaten Libya’s fragile stability, including spreading misleading and unfounded information.”

Bathily “stresses that any roadmap should be designed through inclusive dialogue among Libyan stakeholders acting in full respect of the rights, interests and aspirations of all Libyan people to be governed by legitimate leadership and institutions,” the statement said.

Oil-rich Libya has remained in turmoil since 2011 when longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi was ousted after four decades in power.

The situation worsened last year when the Libyan parliament appointed a new government led by former Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha, but the head of the Tripoli-based government, Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh, said he will cede authority only to a government that comes through an "elected parliament," raising fears that Libya could slip back into a civil war.

*Ikram Imane Kouachi contributed to this report

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