By Sami Zaptia.
London, 2 March 2019:
Over two statements released yesterday, one by the leading western states and the second by the UN Secretary General, the Commander of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Khalia Hafter, was all but recognized by the international community as central to any future solution to Libya’s current political crisis.
Both separate statements welcomed Hafter’s meeting with Presidency Council and Government of National Accord head Faiez Serraj in Abu Dhabi last week.
With Hafter’s increasing claimed “control” of Libyan territory and, more importantly, oilfields, the statements are an acceptance of the realpolitik and de facto military situation on the ground in Libya.
A military reality that has, it seems, translated into a political reality for Hafter.
Here is the UN Secretary General’s statement in full:
The Secretary-General welcomes the 27 February meeting in the United Arab Emirates, convened by his Special Representative for Libya, Ghassan Salamé, between the Prime Minister of Libya and President of the Presidency Council of the Government of National Accord, Faiez Serraj, and the Commander of the Libyan National Army, Khalifa Haftar.
The Secretary General commends both parties on the progress made, in particular the agreement on the need to end the transitional stages in Libya through the holding of general elections, and also the commitment to maintain stability in the country and unify its institutions.
The Secretary-General hopes further progress can be achieved on the basis of what has already been agreed upon, with the support of the international community.