By Jamie Prentis.
Tunis, 6 April 2017:
UN special envoy Martin Kobler was in Tripoli on Thursday for political meetings with a raft of officials including Presidency Council (PC) head Faiez Serraj and State Council president Abdulrahman Sewehli. Little was revealed about their discussions, although Kobler later tweeted that he was worried about the fighting in Jufra and Tamenhint. The UN envoy “encouraged all actors to seek a political solution”.
Only a day after meeting House of Representatives (HoR) president Ageela Saleh in Tobruk, Kobler then saw numerous HoR members now based in Tripoli. These generally support the PC. He told them HoR unity was critical and that “decisions and dialogue need to be inclusive to improve the lives of all Libyans”.
On Tuesday, just 55 of the HoR’s 200 members attended a vote to agree on the conditions for parliament to join the national dialogue. After meeting Saleh in Tobruk, Kobler told reporters that “the first problem is the unity of the HoR” – an issue the UN envoy tried to remedy through his Tripoli discussions.
Kobler also sat down with what is supposed to be the other side of the national dialogue, the State Council and its president. The “forward-looking discussion” looked at the “next steps for advancing the Libyan Political Agreement”, Kobler said.
Setting an agenda for a HoR and State Council dialogue meeting was the top priority and “prompt action” was required.
Following a yet another meeting, this time with young activists, Kobler later tweeted: “Youth are the present and future of Libya so must be part of decision-making. . . . I listened to their recommendations and solutions for peace and economic development in Libya.”
He added this included the implementation of UN Resolution 2250, which seeks to give young adults a greater say in peace processes and dispute resolution.
During the day Kobler visited the Tripoli International Fair and could be seen taking a keen interest in the handicrafts section, even to the extent of donning some traditional clothing. Praising the event, he said it sent a great message to the world that “Libya will rise again”.