Egypt to host Libyan tribal leaders at end of May

Ahram Online , Tuesday 5 May 2015

Egyptian foreign ministry highlights the importance of Libyan tribes in eradicating terrorism and building a stable state in the North African country

Smoke from a fire at a police station is seen in Benghazi July 6, 2014 (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt is to host a meeting of Libyan tribal leaders in late May in an attempt to "support and unify the Libyan people during their crisis," the Egyptian foreign ministry announced on Tuesday.

"Egypt will be hosting the forum of expanded Libyan tribes by the end of May as it believes in supporting the unity of Libyan people and in achieving security all over neighboring Libya, and in order to form a national unified government to pave the way for a stable state," the ministry said.

Foreign ministry spokesman Badr Abdel-Ati said Egypt was coordinating with Libyan tribes and the United Nations to arrange the meeting.     

The ministry’s statement stressed "the importance of communication between Libyan tribes and civil society in supporting "legitimate institutions in Libya."

"The continuation of the current situation will complicate the situation more and will lead to more problems, such as the smuggling of weapons, drugs and illegal migration," the statement read.

Since the 2011 toppling of dictator Muammar Gaddafi, rival militias have been fighting a weak central government across the country.

An internationally recognized government rules out of Tobrouk in the east, while Islamist militias control the country's capital in the west.   

Egypt drew up evacuation plans for its citizens in Libya who wish to leave the war-torn country after the Islamic State (IS) militants beheaded 20 Coptic Egyptians in Derna.

Following the release of the video which captured the gruesome killings, Egypt launched airstrikes on IS militant hideouts, in collaboration with Libya’s government.

Since the start of the civil war, thousands of Egyptian labourers have fled Libya.


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