Egypt played significant role in empowering political process in Libya: US envoy

MENA , Ahram Online , Tuesday 25 May 2021

Richard Norland said Egypt and the US have common interests regarding the stability of the situation in Libya

Ambassador Richard Norland
Ambassador Richard Norland

US Special Envoy for Libya Richard Norland said on Monday Egypt has played a significant role in empowering the political process in Libya, noting that all security problems in the North African country can be addressed should a government be formed there.

In an interview with Extra News channel, Norland said that Egypt and the US have common interests regarding the stability of Libya, noting that Cairo also has security interests and concerns “and we understand that."

Those concerns can be dealt with via the presence of a stable government in Libya, the removal of foreign forces from the country, and by helping it regain control over its territories, he added.

To that end, Norland said the US will provide support in line with the Libyan desire to expel foreign fighters from the country.

The US envoy noted that he has held important meetings with Egyptian officials, as well as with Libyan Parliament Speaker Aguila Saleh.

During his meeting with Saleh, he said they discussed the constitutional and legal grounds for the upcoming elections next December.

Egypt has been pushing for a political settlement in Libya for years, calling for a ceasefire, a complete disarming of militias, an end to foreign intervention in the country, as well as a fair distribution of wealth between various regions in the country.

In February, a new Libyan unified interim executive authority comprising four leaders was chosen, with the assistance of a United Nations-mediated process, to guide the oil-rich country through to national elections in December.

Mohamd Menfi was chosen to head a three-member Presidential Council and Abdul Hamid Dbeibah was named interim prime minister.

Backed by the Libyan parliament, the interim government assumed power in March after almost a decade of turmoil since the ouster and killing of its leader Muammar Gaddafi on the back of the 2011 NATO-backed uprising.

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