Egypt 'fully' supports Libya, its people's free will, Sisi tells Menfi at Cairo meeting

Ahram Online , Tuesday 21 Dec 2021

President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has reaffirmed Egypt's full support for "everything that could achieve the higher interests of Libya, activate the free will of its people, and preserve the country’s unity and sovereignty."

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Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi during a meeting with head of Libya’s Presidency Council Mohamed Al-Menfi at Cairo's Al- Ittihadiya Palace on Tuesday, 22 December 2021 (photo: Egypt's presidency)

El-Sisi made his remarks during a meeting with head of Libya’s Presidency Council Mohamed Al-Menfi at Cairo's Al- Ittihadiya Palace on Tuesday, three days before date set for the Libyan presidential election, which is uncertain so far.

 Al-Menfi expressed his appreciation for Egypt's "vital" role as well as its "tireless and sincere" efforts to help restore security and stability in Libya and unify the country’s state institutions, especially the military institution represented by the Libyan National Army.

The Libyan official also presented a briefing on the internal political situation in Libya, Egyptian Presidential Spokesman Bassam Rady said in a statement following the meeting.

The two sides agreed on intensifying bilateral consultation and coordination to following up on the developments related to the political process and procedures related to managing the transitional period in Libya, Rady added.

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and head of Egypt's General Intelligence Service Abbas Kamel, in addition to Libya’s permanent representative to the Arab League Abdul Muttalib Idris attended the meeting.

Friday's vote is the culmination of a United Nations-led process agreed upon to end 10 years of turmoil that have wracked Libya following the ouster and killing of president Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

However, it is unclear whether the vote will take place as previously scheduled due to disagreements over the legal basis for the vote given procedural delays.  Thus far, the Libyan elections authority has not announced the final list of candidates. The law obliges the authority to publish the list at least two weeks ahead of the vote.

Ahead of the UN-led process, Egypt hosted a host of Libyan dialogue meetings to bridge the gap between various Libyan parties.

On Monday, Egypt launched an electronic link system to regulate Egyptian workers' entry into Libya, which had long been a major destination for Egyptians due to its geographical proximity.

Violence since the uprising in the oil-rich country has scarred businesses and labour, yet efforts to push through with reconstruction continue through the recruitment of workers in neighbouring countries.

Until 2011, three million Egyptian workers had been working in Libya.

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