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UN-mediated Libya crisis talks to resume Wednesday: Lawmaker

AFP , Friday 13 Mar 2015
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UN-mediated talks in Morocco between Libya's rival parliaments aimed at forming a national unity government will resume Wednesday, a lawmaker for the internationally recognised legislature said.

Mohammed Sharif Elouafi spoke after UN envoy Bernardino Leon held a new round of consultations Friday with representatives of the rival legislatures.

Leon "has agreed to a request by members of the (elected) parliament to postpone the negotiations to ensure they are solid," said Elouafi.

"We are now waiting for next Wednesday to come so that members of the parliament submit their proposals," he added, without further details.

The parliament, elected in June, is based in the eastern city of Tobruk, while the rival Islamist-backed General National Congress (GNC) is in the capital.

The two sides are discussing the form a unity government would take and the terms of a cessation of hostilities in the violence-wracked North African nation.

On Friday the UN mission in Libya (UNSMIL) tweeted that Leon held consultations with the parliamentarians present in Morocco, where they had indirect and then direct talks last week.

"Leon holds consultations w/ # LibyanDialogue participants present in Morocco on substantive & organizational issues of the process," it said.

But there was no immediate confirmation from UNSMIL or the GNC that talks would resume next week.

GNC member Omar Hamiddane told reporters the Tripoli-based body had asked Leon "to clarify his position" on the nomination last week by the Tobruk parliament of anti-Islamist General Khalifa Haftar as new army chief.

Haftar's appointment had raised fears that it could derail efforts by Leon to push ahead with the political dialogue.

He is opposed by the Fajr Libya militia alliance which seized Tripoli last summer.

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