By Mustafa Khalifa.
Ghat, 21 January 2016:
A delegation from the Libyan Council of Elders was in Ghat yesterday at the invitation of . . .[restrict]the local municipal council to try and put the Obari peace deal back on track. The agreement, hammered out in Doha two months ago, required Tuareg and Tebu militias to withdraw from the oasis town in the south west of the country. Less than a fortnight ago, on the same day that talks were due to start in Sebha between the two communities on implementing the agreement, hopes of peace were blown away in renewed Obari clashes, blamed on a Tebu militia. At least five people have been killed in the town since.
The elders are also trying to help Ghat, which is suffering with empty shops and high prices because its road to Sebha has been cut off by the fighting in Obari.
“We came at the invitation of Ghat municipal council,” Salem Al-Masheargy, vice-chairman of the Libya Council of Elders told the Libya Herald. “We discussed with the municipal council and as well as the local council of elders and the Supreme Council of the Tuareg in Libya the current situation in Obari and the problems among the Tebu and Tuareg . . . because security in the south is the north’s security,” he said, adding that a solution was urgently needed.
Meanwhile, a Tuareg organisation based in London, the Imouhagh International Youth Organisation for Justice and Equality, in a report published today on the clashes in Obari which since September 2014 have killed over 300 people, blamed them on outside forces exploiting local rivalries. It pointed to the “presence and actions of a number of well-backed groups and local militias that are being externally and internally driven by different parties and tribal alliances.”
The aim, it further said, was to ethically cleanse Libya of its Tuareg population. [/restrict]