Egypt, France discuss developments in Libyan crisis, Ethiopian dam

Ahram Online , Saturday 20 Jun 2020

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian discussed the most recent developments in Libyan hours after Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi hinted at the possibility of a direct intervention by the Egyptian army to restore peace in the war-torn country.

According to an official statement by the Egyptian foreign ministry, Shoukry and Le Drian discussed several regional issues during the phone meeting, mainly the situation in Libya and developments related to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

They also discussed bilateral relations between the two countries, the statement said.

The phone call came hours after El-Sisi said on Saturday that any direct Egyptian intervention in Libya would have international legitimacy at this point.

The president made the statement in a televised speech while inspecting Egypt's Western Military Zone accompanied by the heads and elders of Libyan tribes, Egyptian Minister of Defence and General Commander of the Armed Forces Mohamed Zaki, Chief-of-Staff Mohamed Farid, as well as leaders of the main branches of the Egyptian Armed Forces.

El-Sisi said that Egypt has called for a comprehensive settlement in Libya that involves the elimination of terrorist militias and has participated in Libya-related international conferences and supported crisis-resolution efforts.

Egypt, along with the UAE and Russia, backs Haftar, who has been fighting the forces of the UN-backed government, which is backed by Turkey.

Earlier this month, El-Sisi announced a peace initiative dubbed the Cairo Declaration to end the civil war in Libya, proposing a ceasefire and an elected leadership council.

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