Egyptian airstrikes inside Libya upset Algeria

Egyptian airstrikes inside Libya upset Algeria

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LIBYAPROSPECT – Editorial

Arab and European media outlets reported on disputes between Egypt and Algeria after the airstrikes launched by Egyptian air forces inside Libya last Friday.

According to reports, Egypt, Tunisia, and Algeria’s foreign ministers are set to meet, on June 5th, and 6th in the Algerian capital to “evaluate the Libyan situation” and understand the reasons for the unilateral actions by Cairo.

The spokesperson of the Egyptian army, Tamer Refaei, said that “the Egyptian military strikes against terrorist training sites inside Libya are to continue.” He also said, last week that “anyone plotting terrorist attacks against Egypt has to know they are out of our reach, wherever they are, whoever they are,” according to Anadolu News Agency.

The frustration from the Egyptian strikes inside Libya is due to the absence of consultations with the rest of actors, especially Algeria and Tunisia. Algeria is specifically concerned of the Egyptian air raids, especially because it is still committed to avoiding any military intervention in Libya.

Algeria refused earlier the French military intervention in Mali in 2013. Algeria rejects any foreign military movements in Libya.

A close source of the Algerian foreign ministry said that “Algeria is fully considering losses and consequences of any quick un-rational military intervention in such chaotic country.” The source added that “Algeria believes in dialogue, return to the negotiations table, and diplomatic solutions. But military intervention, which serves one party against the other, would further complicate matters.”

According to diplomatic sources, Algeria condemned Al-Sisi actions in Libya. At the same time, Algeria demanded Cairo to halt air strikes in Libya. Observers are surprised of linking Al-Minya attack to a Libyan city; some accuse the Egyptian President Abdul-Fattah Al-Sisi of hitting Derna to support his ally, the commander of Alkaram Operation in Benghazi, General Khalifa Haftar.

On the other side, some Libyan political parties asked Algeria for protection; their leaders called Ahmed Owehy, one of the prominent figures in Al-Maradya presidential palace in Algeria.

Algerian source said that “the head of the Presidential Council (PC) of the Government of National Accord (GNA), Fayez Al-Sarraj, personally called Owehy.” He added that “Algeria is worried about intense Egyptian military support to Haftar, Algeria sees Haftar as untrustworthy who may deepen the Libyan crisis.”

From its side, Algeria sees no other solution to the Libyan crisis but to merge the Islamists who are refused in Cairo and Washington in peace equation in Libya.

For this to succeed, Algeria and Cairo should agree on the Libyan future. But in the meantime, Algeria asked Cairo to respect the roadmap.