Minister says violence in Libya is undermining peace efforts

Libya – Statement by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson – United Nations – Conversation between M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, and Mr Ghassan Salamé

Paris, 17 April 2019

M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, spoke on the telephone this afternoon to Mr Ghassan Salamé, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Libya. The Minister and his interlocutor took stock of the security and humanitarian situation in Tripoli.

M. Jean-Yves Le Drian signalled France’s concern about a situation which is undermining the peace efforts begun in Libya with the international community’s support, of which civilians are the first victims. He recalled the vital need for a ceasefire and for dialogue to be resumed immediately, with a view to relaunching a credible political process, conducted under the authority of the United Nations and sanctioned by the swift holding of elections.

The Minister assured the Special Representative of France’s full support for his mediation and paid tribute to the courage he is showing with his teams in fulfilling his mission.

France is resolved to continue its efforts alongside Libyans, its European partners and Libya’s neighbours to find a negotiated way out of this conflict, resolving which is a major challenge for the security of Europe, stability in the Mediterranean and Sahel, and migration control./.

Libya – Reply by M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, to a question in the National Assembly

Paris, 9 April 2019

The latest information is not encouraging. Fighting is continuing around Tripoli, there have been dozens of deaths and a more serious confrontation is to be feared.

In view of this, three commitments must be made: firstly, to reach a ceasefire as soon as possible. This concerns both parties, not only Marshal Haftar but also Prime Minister Sarraj. The French President spoke to Prime Minister Sarraj yesterday, with this goal of an immediate ceasefire and then a resumption of dialogue. It’s all the more necessary because there was an agreement between the two parties in Abu Dhabi a few days ago, and this agreement enabled the transition to be ensured before political elections. The agreement was broken, so dialogue must be re-established on the basis of the Abu Dhabi agreement and under the responsibility of the United Nations and Mr Guterres’ representative on the ground, Mr Ghassan Salamé.

Finally, thirdly, there must be the prospect of a political settlement, because there will be no military solution in that country. A political settlement is necessary on foundations which are more or less known by everyone, and it requires presidential and general elections before the end of the year.

As you can see, that country is essential not only for our security and for stability in the Mediterranean but also for controlling migration, and the country is suffering from the fact that, since 2014 in particular but since 2011 in fact, there has been no political will to achieve a resolution to the crisis. It’s actually the refusal to have political debate and a political solution that has brought about the instability, and not vice versa.

So it’s important for the parties involved to get together, under the aegis of the United Nations, to achieve these results.

France is actively working to this end by talking to everyone along the same lines./.

Published on 18/04/2019

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