Home News Leon’s Statement on Monday night 21/September/2015

Leon’s Statement on Monday night 21/September/2015


According to UNSMIL website, Leon hosted a press conference on Monday night, he said:

You know that in every process in every negotiations there is a moment in which we have to declare that the job is done. And what I am coming to say tonight is that we finished our work. We have now a text that is the final text. So, our part of the process is now finished. Now it is up to the parties, up to the participants in the dialogue to react to this text, but not in terms of adding more comments or getting back with something to negotiate. It is the moment for them and for the Libyans after a process that has been longer, really much longer than we all expected and all thought that could be possible for a country that is facing o many challenges so for them to say yes we want to work together we want to overcome together these challenges or not.

This in case of the institutions, of course, it would be possible. They can refuse, they can reject this proposal. But in this case they will also be choosing the uncertainty, the difficulties to work with the international community, to work with other Libyans and, of course, putting this country in a very difficult position.

So on behalf of the United Nations, my second message tonight is for the parties, for all the Libyans to understand that this seems to be the only option. We know very well that as in all similar negotiations and agreements this is not perfect for most of the Libyans. Every Libyan, every institution, every party, every organization will see elements in the agreement that they don’t like, but hopefully they will also see more elements that they like and they will all understand in this situation in Libya, such confrontation, killings, humanitarian crisis and so many problems, they must expect that if there is a solution, that this proposal is a solution, it will be a text like this final text like we have proposed today.

We have had during a year-long negotiations, discussions, exchanges, debates, with the different actors and at this stage we believe that the United Nations is well placed to assess when the final moment has arrived and to understand what the parties can accept and what they cannot accept. This is what our responsibility as mediators is to assess that this moment has arrived and this is with our full sense of responsibility and with our understanding that the role of the United Nations is in the world and Libya today to tell the Libyans, tell the institutions that are involved that they have to be flexible, generous and they have to put the interest of their country above any other consideration. They have to be positive. They have to see what this process is going to bring to the country, and not to be concerned of what they would have liked to see in the text or to see as outcome of this process and will not be there. This is not the question today, the question today is to get Libya back to track to build, peace development, prosperity in the country.

And the most important element that many Libyans are asking today and especially in the last hours and today many Libyans in the east, many Libyans in Benghazi, is security. I’m here representing the United Nations but we are accompanied by many ambassadors of many countries in the international community we have all expressed on many occasions our solidarity with those who are suffering in Libya, displaced people, mothers, children, people who cannot go to school, who cannot find food medicines and this is especially tough in Benghazi. It is a city that is facing a very, an extremely difficult situation and it’s a city that is suffering is terms of solidarity. Our solidarity also with the city, with the people that are suffering attacks from groups, terrorist groups that are on the list of international organizations that are considered terrorist by United Nations Security Council resolutions, and obviously this solidarity today is translated in our fill support to the only weapon that will allow the Libyans to prevail in this battle, which is unity. Without unity, without an agreement that will allow the Libyans to work together to achieve security there will not be a possibility to prevail and defeat terrorism.

You heard recently that I made strong statements about what has been going on in Benghazi in the last days. We believe and we still call for all the Libyans to understand that this process has reached the most delicate moment, the moment in which it will be possible to take the way of political unity or the way of uncertainty and chaos, further chaos, because we have a lot of chaos in Libya. Enough, I think. We call on all the Libyans to be responsible and to refrain from any action that could hinder and complicate even more the possibilities of success in this process.

We very much hope that in the coming days that the parties will be back, and ready to discuss names. It has now been confirmed by all the parties in this process, without exception, all of them are ready to discuss the names of the unity government, immediately after Eid. And we all hope that this process will be expedited, that it will be possible to finish in two or three days to vote the text and to attend a final session, a closing session of this dialogue in New York during the week of the UN General Assembly.

If it is possible, if the parties vote and endorse the agreement, then in the following days after New York it could be possible to initial the text and we will discuss with the participants, with the Libyans in general how they envisage this ceremony, but we all know very well that this city which is hosting is a candidate, a natural candidate but, of course, this is a decision the Libyans have to take. And afterwards, of course, the wish has been expressed by all the participants unanimously, is that the signing should take place in Libya. This is something that also for the international community, for the United Nations, is the ideal final stage of our work and we very much hope and look forward to this signing in Libya in the coming weeks.

All this will hopefully happen with a deadline we have, which is the 20th of October. Nobody would like to see any political vacuum in Libya. We want to see a political and legal clear framework. The country needs it. The international community needs it to operate in Libya, to have partners with a very clear legal status. It has been extremely difficult for the international community to deal with Libya in the last year, and actually (it is) really a miracle that some operations are still taking place given the legal and political chaos.

But the good news for the country and the good news for the international community is that today there is a clear possibility for the chaos to finish, with a clear definition of who is the government, to overcome this division, in regions, institutions, parliaments, governments, with the unity that will allow them to return to what Libya always was, a rich country a healthy country, a country that can be – and you know that I like always to insist on this idea that can be a very good example, a very good reference for those countries that are suffering in the regions, countries like Iraq, Syria, Yemen that are also very hopeful that the Libyans will become their good example, a political solution through dialogue and not through violence and war.