By Libya Herald reporter.
Tripoli, 10 May 2016:
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Sisi has told Russian President Vladimir Putin in a phone call . . .[restrict]today that the Libyan government and state institutions need to be supported. However, the top priority had to be the Libya army.
The stress on the Libyan army is in line with his call three days ago for the lifting of the UN arms embargo on Libya in order to enable the army to fight terrorism. He made the call at an earlier meeting with the members of the Libyan Presidency including prime minister-desigate Faiez Serraj. In those talks Sisi expressed his backing for the Presidency Council but added that the Libyan army had to be able to fight the terrorists.
The Libyan army to which Sisi refers, though, is largely under the control of General Khalifa Hafter. He is firmly opposed to the Presidency Council and the UN-brokered Libyan Political Agreement (LPA), which set it up.
Despite this, Ahmed Maetig, who has managed to make himself the principle deputy leader of the Presidency Council, has said last week’s meeting with the Egyptian president as positive noting that Sisi fully supported the LPA.
In an interview with the Cairo newspaper Youm 7, Maetig said that the Egyptian authorities had expressed their willingness to help Libya deal with all its crises.
Over the past two years, Egypt’s primary concern about Libya’s has been over its ability to deal with terrorism. This has been fuelled in recent weeks by reports that a number of Egyptians militants have gone into hiding in Libya. [/restrict]