By Sami Zaptia.
Tripoli, 12 August 2014:
Speaking to the House of Representatives (HoR) yesterday in Tobruk , Caretaker Prime Minister Abdullah Thinni blamed the fighting between state controlled and funded militias on former General National Congress (GNC) president Nuri Abusahmain.
The Prime Minister said that the GNC president used the pretext of the protection of the GNC and the capital for the military action in Tripoli.
Thinni was speaking for the first time to the HoR after its inauguration in Tobruk having just returned from his trip to the USA to attend the US-Africa conference.
His report to the HoR follows similar reports the previous days presented to the legislature by a number of his Ministers as well as the Chief of Staff.
Thinni reported to the HoR that Libya would not be ruled by anyone who used force again or by any one ideology, he said, referring to the warring militias who have caused destruction of aircraft, Tripoli’s main International Airport, Tripoli’s main fuel depot, as well as indiscriminate destruction of residential property across Tripoli.
The Prime Minister nevertheless said that the government was ready to talk with anyone who recognizes its legitimacy.
He also stressed that the situation in Libya did not need outside interference, but rather it needed debate and negotiations between all Libyans.
However, he said that the international community should accept its responsibility and play a part in building Libya and protecting civilians.
Thinni said that his government had formed committees seeking to find a solution to the existing conflict as well as for the compensation of civilians that had suffered losses from the conflict.
Meanwhile, a copy of an order by the Chief of Staff for a ceasefire to all military activity was leaked yesterday.
This leak comes after the Chief of Staff had attended an uncomfortable questioning session at the HoR in Tobruk yesterday in which he admitted he had no control over the Libyan “army”, which is overwhelmingly made up of officially recognized militias.
It will be recalled that prior to the convening of the HoR on 6 August, the head of the outgoing GNC, Nuri Abu Sahmain, was appointed by the GNC as the Supreme Commander of Libya’s Armed Forces.
Having admitted that the militias do not take any orders from him yesterday in his testimony to the HoR, it is not clear why the Chief of Staff feels that they will heed his orders to ceasefire.
It is not clear whether the Chief of Staff feels that the threat by the HoR to disband the militias, withdraw their legal recognition, terminate their wages and the local and international threat to take criminal legal action against them – would act as leverage.
What is a clear fact, which can be witnessed by residents in Tripoli on Monday, is that the fighting has not stopped. [/restrict]