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Leon: “Libyan dialogue has reached the final stage”

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Bernardino Leon, the UN special envoy to Libya, has stated that the UN-led Libyan dialogue has reached the final stage, even though the latest round of dialogue in Morocco has been postponed to next Thursday.

When meeting with Sameh Shoukry, the Egyptian Foreign Minister, Leon said “the political agreement in Libya is moving towards the final stage… We are moving now in the direction of the final phase of this agreement, the final and most difficult mile, but there is a feeling of optimism and a real possibility to achieve this agreement”.

Leon also said, “I’m not here talking about a vague timetable, we want to implement the agreement in the coming days”. He added, “A week ago, I said, that it (the agreement) must be completed the first of September, next week is the time limit, then we work in the next two weeks to vote on the candidates nominated by the participants in the dialogue, so as to reach a final agreement by the next meeting of the U.N. General Assembly on September 21”.

SirteSeeing that the dialogue is in the final stages, Leon remains adamant to complete the dialogue, despite the recent catastrophe which took place in Sirte, he said “The situation in Sirte is difficult and IS is an enemy to all Libyans from all parties, and certainly the unity of Libya is the most powerful weapon against IS”.

When the Libyan Foreign Minister of the government under the House of Representatives, Mohammed al-Dairi spoke to Sky News he said that, the international community has now felt the seriousness and the level of danger of the situation in Libya, especially after what happened in Sirte. The International community is assured that there must be a concord government. Al-Dairi also said that it is very important to reach the point of having this government as soon as possible, so then we can fight terrorism in our country.

In other news, Bashir al-Kebti, the head of the Muslim Brotherhood in Libya, has refuted the most recent decision of the Arab League to support Libya militarily. He stated that no foreign country should be allowed to deploy troops to Libya, he said “any external interference will be considered by Libyans as an invasion that requires confrontation and that Libyans alone are able to cleanse their towns from IS”.

He says that the Libyans have chosen to undertake the path of the UN-brokered dialogue, therefore they should stick to the path they have chosen. He added “States are seeking through the Arab League, a way to support Khalifa Haftar, which we see as a counter to the national dialogue and the stability of our country  … and for a fact Haftar essentially rejects UN dialogue and emphasizes that his army is outside its mandate”

The head of the higher security committee in Sirte said that there were airstrikes from Libya dawn on the locations of IS in Sirte. Despite this, it is reported that the radical Nigerian extremist group, Boko Haram, are present in Libya fighting with IS in Sirte. It is estimated that there are between 80-200 Boko Haram Militants fighting in the Libyan city of Sirte.