Developments in Libya: ongoing move to hold meeting of neighbouring countries' FMs
19/04/2019 17:36, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) – Initiatives are ongoing to hold a meeting of foreign ministers of Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt in Tunis. That meeting will aim to co-ordinate efforts of the three countries to put an end to tension in Libya and resume political negotiations, the Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a press release Friday.

FM Khemaies Jhinaoui is building up contacts and consultations with the different regional and international sides to swiftly stop the military conflict in Libya.

Since the start of the fighting in several Libyan regions and in the surroundings of the capital Tripoli on April 4, Tunisia has stepped up its contacts with the Libyan sides to urge them to stop the bloodshed of the Libyan people and put an end to the military escalation.

The National Security Council had convened on April 5, one day after the beginning of fighting in Libya, under chairmanship of President Beji Caid Essebsi.

The meeting focused on the developments in Libya and the urgent need to reach a political solution to the crisis, based on dialogue between the different sides.

On April 8, the Foreign Ministry expressed in a statement it deep concern about the serious military escalation in Libya and called on all parties to show restraint, prioritise dialogue and preserve the political process undertaken under the umbrella of the United Nations.

Tunisia further stressed, in the same statement, the need to provide the necessary conditions for the success of the Libyan National Conference that was due to be held on April 14-16 as an important step towards a peaceful and consensual settlement.

For his part, the President of the Republic had a phone conversation with Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord of Libya Fayez Al-Sarraj and Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Ghassen Salamé about the situation in Libya and the need to preserve the political process so as to get out of the crisis and avoid division.

Caid Essebsi also received on Wednesday at Carthage Palace Deputy Prime Minister of the Libyan Government of National Accord Ahmed Maiteeq. Both sides discussed the efforts made to stop military operations and pave the way for dialogue and negotiations between the different Libyan factions.

He reiterated on this occasion, Tunisia’s position in favour of peace by prevailing Libya’s interest above all consideration.

Given the worsening of the crisis and the risk of a military escalation, Jhinaoui made during the week a set of phone talks with Libyan Foreign Minister Mohamed Tahar Siala, UN Secretary-General Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Ghassan Salamé and Marshal Khalifa Haftar.

Jhinoaui further received at the Foreign Ministry in Tunis, President of Libya’s High Council of State Khaled Mechri.

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