LibyaPolitics

No political talks before LNA withdrawal: Sarraj

Head of the Presidency Council (PC) Faiez al-Sarraj stressed that the cessation of clashes and the resumption of the political process in Libya depends on the withdrawal of the Libyan National Army (LNA) to its former positions.

It comes during a meeting between Sarraj and the United Nations envoy for Libya Ghassan Salame on Saturday.

Both officials addressed the efforts of the U.N. mission to stop the clashes in Tripoli and restart political talks.

Sarraj said the future political process should be based on rules that “consider the new situation that resulted from the clashes.”

For his part, Salame reiterated the U.N. call for ceasefire in Tripoli to restart talks for a political settlement in Libya, emphasizing the U.N.’s condemnation of all assaults on civilians and public buildings.

This meeting was held on the sidelines of the funeral of Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi who died on July 25 at age 92.

The current situation in Libya always concerned neighbor Tunisia. There were also worries that chaos in Libya could lead to infiltration of Libyan-based jihadists into Tunisia.

The LNA, which holds eastern Libya and much of the country’s south, has launched an offensive in early April to wrestle the capital from forces loyal to the U.N.-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA).

Air strikes and ground fighting have since left nearly 1,000 people dead and some 5,000 wounded, the World Health Organization said.

The fighting has forced more than 100,000 people to flee their homes and threatens to plunge Libya into deeper conflict.

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