UN envoy, top Tunisian diplomat discuss Libya crisis

UN envoy, top Tunisian diplomat discuss Libya crisis

Abdoulaye Bathily, Othman Jerandi call on 'relevant institutions to swiftly finalize the constitutional basis for elections'

By Adel Bin Ibrahim Bin Elhady Elthabti and Hamdi Yildiz

TUNUS, Tunisia (AA) – The UN secretary-general’s special representative for Libya and Tunisian Foreign Minister Othman Jerandi held discussions Tuesday on “a way out of the crisis” in Libya.

“We discussed ways to encourage Libyan political and security actors to come together in Libya and agree on a way out of the crisis by holding elections as soon as possible,” Abdoulaye Bathily, who is in Tunisia, wrote on Twitter.

Bathily and Jerandi “called on relevant institutions to swiftly finalize the constitutional basis for elections as the country nears the one-year anniversary of the postponement of the 2021 elections,” he added.

The two diplomats agreed “on the need for strengthened coordination among regional actors to encourage all Libyan stakeholders to reach an agreement to break the deadlock,” he added.

Last week, the head of the Tripoli-based unity government, Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh, welcomed a call by the UN envoy to Libya for holding elections in the country.

"I welcome the statement of the Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily, in which he urged all the relevant parties to achieve what he described as the ‘sole purpose’ to go for elections," Dbeibeh said in a statement on Twitter.

On Saturday, Bathily called "on political actors to accelerate discussions on the way forward in the political process and to create the conditions for the holding of free and fair elections."

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

The situation has worsened since last March when the Libyan parliament appointed a new government led by former Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha, but Dbeibeh insists 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.

Libya saw violent clashes between forces aligned with the two rivals in Tripoli last August, leaving dozens dead.

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