Although experts see the hardening of the UN’s position against Haftar as a welcome sign, they blame the international body for giving him carte blanche in Libya and for complicating the conflict.
Jan Kubis, the UN special envoy to Libya, expressed concern over the collapse of the ceasefire agreement in Libya, highlighting the main obstacles that nullify any peaceful gains that the international community had achieved over the past year.
As he addressed the United Nations (UN) Security Council meeting on Thursday, Kubis lashed out at the so-called Libyan National Army, led by warlord Khalifa Haftar, for throwing a key in the work of peacemakers by disavowing the government of national unity to extend its authority to areas controlled by the LNA, a crucial step to reunite the country so that the international community can work towards the holding of elections free and fair by the end of this year.
Due to the rigidity of the LNA, Kubis noted, “The Presidency Council and the Government could not agree on the appointment of the Minister of Defense, a crucial post for the implementation of the Ceasefire Agreement, for the progress on disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of armed groups, security sector reform, and military reunification. “
âThe old and new forces of the status quo use various tactics and often legitimate arguments with only one result: obstructing the holding of elections. My predecessor who had his own experience with similar approaches called them “spoilers” – a correct description given the impact of their approach and maneuvers, “he added.
Kubis meet warlord Khalifa Haftar last week to discuss the dismantling of armed groups under his control, with the government of national unity footing the bill for the salaries of its forces.
Since the UN previously allowed some pro-Haftar figures to participate in the transitional government elections as part of the LPDF process, its position in Libya has become questionable. Several pro-Haftar allies have waged war against the UN-recognized government in Tripoli, making the UN’s soft stance towards Haftar questionable.
According to Jalel Harchaoui, a researcher at the Clingendael Institute, a think tank in the Netherlands, neither the UN nor the United States is putting pressure on the LNA.
“Haftar’s rhetoric is pointedly in favor of holding the elections in December 2021. His supporters also ensure that a military man can run for president without first resigning,” Harchaoui told TRT World.
Abdulkader Assad, editor-in-chief of The Libya Observer and Libya Alahrar English, says the UN has been well aware of Haftar’s impediments to peace and the political process since 2014, when the warlord announced his military operation in Libya , rejecting the UN-led peace. initiatives.
“The UN knows full well that Haftar and his militias are involved in war crimes and they are supported by the Russian group Wagner, the dirty money of the United Arab Emirates, the European lobbying of France and the international impunity of the United States. The UN considers Haftar a key figure in the political process despite calls from inside and outside Libya to prevent him from entering with the militia leaders who attacked civilians in Benghazi in 2014, Derna from 2016 to 2018, southern Libya in 2018 as well as Tripoli from 2019 to 2020, âAssad said.
Commenting on recent remarks by UN Special Envoy Kubis at the UN Security Council meeting on Thursday, Assad said the UN statement that Haftar does not allow GNU to control the east of Libya was just a “very simple sentence” intended to “distract from the main problem.” , that is, Haftar is in fact hampering the work of the GNU by ordering the House of Representatives and Aguila Saleh not to pass the budget and continuing to act as an outlaw military leader based autonomously in the east. “
âJan Kubis knows that Haftar is involved in war crimes and is obstructing the elections and the LPDF roadmap, but he recently met him and proudly took a selfie with the criminal, as did all previous envoys. Ultimately, the UN mission is acting on an agenda that works better for chaos and instability rather than peace and security in Libya, âAssad told TRT World.
At the UN Security Council meeting, Libyan Prime Minister Abdul-Hamid Dbeibah also called once again for the immediate withdrawal of mercenaries and foreign fighters from Libya, calling on the House of Representatives and the High Council to ‘State as well as members of the Libyan Political Dialogue to set aside their differences and do their job to enable Libyans to hold elections on time.
According to Assad, the Libyan Prime Minister’s statement on mercenaries and foreign fighters was “very realistic” as they constitute the “main threat to the elections”.
“Abdul-Hamid Dbeibah really failed to say who these mercenaries are,” Assad added.
“The majority of the Libyan public know for sure that Turkish forces are in Libya on the basis of bilateral agreements reached in the light of day and this is the reason why Tripoli was not destroyed by a thirsty warlord of blood”,
Assad believes the Libyan prime minister did not call on Russia and the UAE and name Haftar as the main saboteur of the political process, which could bode ill for the entire electoral process.
âDbeibah appears in a position of political weakness because he avoids tackling the main problem that Libya has suffered over the past 7 years and more. He must raise the issue of Haftar to have fair elections. “
âIf he doesn’t, war is on the horizon, unfortunately! Assad said.
Source: TRT World