LibyaPolitics

Tunisia, Italy call for halting war in Libya

The Italian and Tunisian governments have called for halting the ongoing war in Tripoli, which caused a huge number of casualties since mid-April.

In a Tuesday meeting in Tunisia, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Khemaies Jhinaoui emphasized with his Italian counterpart Enzo Moavero Milanesi the importance of resuming political discussions as the only way to reach a comprehensive, political settlement to the Libyan crisis under the auspices of the United Nations and without foreign interference.

The two ministers praised the UN efforts with all Libyan factions in an attempt to take them back to the negotiation table.

On April 24, Milanesi held a joint press conference with head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Ghassan Salame in which it was announced that neither presidential nor parliamentary elections would be held any time soon in Libya.

Salame said it was not possible to organize elections in Libya amid the ongoing conflict. He added that the Libyan crisis has no alterative solution but the political and peaceful one, urging all Libyan factions to avoid any further escalations.

Salame expressed hope that the UN efforts and communications with Libyan parties during the past period would make positive results, especially before the holy month of Ramadan.

Italy’s stance on the Libyan conflict has been controversial during the past period, as the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Commander Khalifa Haftar has accused it of cooperating with militia.

In an interview with Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera on Friday April 26, the LNA spokesperson Ahmed al-Mismari demanded that the Italian government closes its medical facility in Misurata, claiming that terrorists are using it as a shelter.

“It is obvious to us that the Italian military hospital and the four hundred Italian soldiers who guard it must leave Misurata immediately. They are no longer a humanitarian mission and in fact support the extremist militias that are waging war on our Libyan national army,” Mismari said.

Italy, however, denies all these accusations, and says it only supports the Libyan people and does not support any forces on the ground.

According to the Italian newspaper, the General Staff in Rome issued a statement saying the Italians “are absolutely not involved” in the clashes sweeping Libya.

Meanwhile, in a press conference in Beijing, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said his country “is not taking sides” regarding the ongoing conflict in the Libyan Capital.

According to the Italian newspaper, the General Staff in Rome issued a statement saying the Italians “are absolutely not involved” in the clashes sweeping Libya.

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