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Skhirat agreement between Libyans’ aspirations and the West


By: Khaled Mohamed Bashir*

A political agreement, expected to end the conflict between the 2 poles of the Libyan conflict, was signed in Skhirat on Thursday,

Khaled Mohamed Bashir
Khaled Mohamed Bashir

with a huge presence of members of the General National Congress (GNC) and the House of Representatives (HoR).

According the agreement, the Presidential Council was formed and the government is expected to be announced soon. Fayez Al-Sarraj was named the Prime Minister and the chief to the Presidential Council. Names of other members weren’t officially announced. Leaks were out about the representatives of East and South delayed the announcement of the rest of the members.

Apparently, the agreement went with the Fezzan initiative that included increasing the members of the Presidential Council to 9 (PM+8 members), taking decision by consensus, granting members veto powers on sensitive decisions including choosing ministers and replacing the army leader. Such steps make the council’s tasks difficult, but grant sense of security to all members as they use the vote as shield to protect interests.

The Presidential Council will probably function as a mini-parliament, irreversible decisions, it earned legitimacy from the United Nations, the international community, and signatories from the HoR and the GNC, which will decrease the powers of the GNC and the HoR in the state’s future policies.

Libyans hope the agreement will be able to end the division across the country and to pave for forming an able government to impose security, improve humanitarian and living conditions. While the west wants the government to fight the Islamic State group (IS), curb migrations flows, refuel Europe with Libyan oil and the restoration of European gas companies; Eni, Total and Repsol work in Libya.

Implementing the agreement seems non-easy. Even if it was widely welcomed by international community and signers, chiefs of HoR and GNC and a significant number of members still refuse it.

Rival governments and militias, are silent, while Libyans are anticipating. This may be attributed to Al-Sarraj’s lack of trying to gain public support for the council before announcing it. It is still unknown how the government will start its tasks.

Preparations for foreign intervention have reached so far. American soldiers arrived at Al-watea base on Monday, their photos went online, while the American government confirmed that the visit wasn’t the first. The British government implied readiness to send 1000 soldiers to join 5000 Italian soldiers. La Rebupplica Italian newspaper leaked.

Upcoming days will be critical for the Libyan history. I hope the Presidential Council pulls its tasks off, benefit from experiences and mistakes of former governments, be able to achieve Libyans’ aspirations and deal with serious and urgent demands of the west in exchange for, as much support as possible, to help state’s institutions, while preserving the Libyan sovereignty.

No one would like to see the Afghan case happening in Libya. In Bonn international conference in December 2001, Hamid Karzai was inaugurated as president after NATO forces entered the country. Karzai then officially authorized the military intervention. His opinion wasn’t taken much in what was happening in his country.

I call for sane optimism; I also call on opposing parties to the agreement to be sane; there is no point in resisting the west. Those parties have already had their full chance. Libya doesn’t need another pitter experience like that in 2011. Libya above all; and the agreement won’t succeed without all Libyans, who will gain the fruits of the agreement.

May Allah bless us all and guide us well.

*A Libyan Writer

Translated By LIBYAPROSPECT: Source