The US ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland, revealed the incorrectness of the rumors about Washington’s efforts to extend the term of the government of Abdul Hamid al-Dabaiba, and stressed at the same time that his country is waiting for all parties to take the necessary measures to ensure that Libya does not slip into the cycle of violence.
Regarding reports that refer to direct talks between Dabaiba and Bashagha, Norland confirmed, during an interview with Al-Hadath channel, that he has information regarding the possibility of holding such talks, but the location where they will take place has not yet been determined.
The US ambassador said Fathi Bashagha called for talks in Turkey, and Washington supports the idea of holding talks, but the initiative in this regard is not for the US to decide, knowing that the United Nations and Adviser to the Secretary-General Stephanie Williams confirmed their readiness to play a role in facilitating understandings at this stage.
“Although the situation is still tense so far, important things confirm that the situation is under control, for example, that Bashagha and Dabaiba do not want to slip into violence, and that the general situation prevailing in Libya after the past ten years will not allow the return of violence again. And there will be a complete rejection of any move in this direction. International partners are keen to hold the elections, shown in the cooperation of Egypt, Morocco, Turkey, Algeria, France, Italy and Germany in this direction.” Noorland said, revealing that there is no answer yet regarding the formation of a committee from the House of Representatives and High Council of State to interact with Williams’ initiative.
The US ambassador warned against closing the airspace between eastern and western Libya, by saying: “We demand the reopening of the airspace, because one of the successes that have been achieved over the years is unifying the country’s institutions and allowing east and west travel.”
Norland stressed that his country has no plans to expand in Libya, adding that security cooperation with Libya is a natural and urgent issue, if a government has the capacity and asks Washington to do so, but all of that is not currently available. He reiterated that if such a government emerges, Washington is ready to cooperate.