Head of the Government of the National Accord (GNA) Faiez al Sarraj announced Sunday a political initiative to resolve the escalating Libyan crisis and unify the state institutions.
The initiative includes the convention of the Libyan National Forum, in cooperation with the U.N. Support Mission in Libya, to bring together all “influential national forces on the political and social scene,” reach a political and democratic solution and pave the way for parliamentary and presidential elections.
“I present today a political initiative for a way out of crisis… (involving) simultaneous presidential and legislative elections before the end of 2019,” Sarraj said in a short speech broadcast by Libyan al-Wataniya TV, without specifying a date for polls.
Under the initiative, a specialized legal committee should be formed to put into effect steps on which Libyan factions would agree during the forum.
The decentralisation of Libya, the fair distribution of financial resources, comprehensive spatial development for all parts of the country, transparency and good governance will all be tackled in the forum to be activated afterwards.
Sine ousting Muammer el Gaddafi in 2011, Libya’s authority has divided between an internationally-recognized GNA with its Presidential Council, the House of Representatives (HoR) in Tobruk, which supports the GNA rival, the Libyan of the National Army (LNA).
This comes along militias and armed groups exploiting the lack of security in Libya to control limited territory.
So far, the international community’s attempts have failed to reach an agreement between the two major factions despite efforts by U.N.-led international mediation.
The escalation has heightened after the eastern LNA launched a military operation to “liberate” the western region, namely Tripoli where the GNA is based.
“We are confident that our forces are capable of repulsing the aggressor and of him sending him back to where he came from… victory has been our ally, thank God,” Sarraj said.
He added that Haftar is seeking to “undermine the democratic process… and to re-establish a totalitarian regime, that of an individual and a single family.”
Sarraj’s initiative, although not new as the National Forum was already being prepared for right before the LNA’s operation on April 4, is a departure from his previous stance that only allowed a ceasefire if Haftar withdrew to his barracks prior to his offensive.