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UNSC Urges Quick Ceasefire in Libya
By Staff, Agencies
The United Nations [UN] Security Council called Tuesday on Libya's warring sides to quickly reach a ceasefire that would pave the way for a political process aimed at ending conflict in the oil-rich state.
The UN meeting followed up on a weekend Libya summit held in Berlin, which saw the formation of a military commission that is supposed to define ways of consolidating a cessation of hostilities.
It is to comprise five members each from the UN-recognized government in Tripoli and its opponents loyal to military strongman Khalifa Haftar.
"The members of the Security Council urged the Libyan parties to engage constructively in the five + five military commission in order to conclude a ceasefire agreement as soon as possible," the Council said.
The North African country has been torn by fighting between rival armed factions since a 2011 NATO-backed uprising killed longtime dictator Muammar Gadhafi and toppled his regime.
Since April last year the UN-recognized Government of National Accord [GNA] in Tripoli has fought back against an offensive by fighters loyal to Haftar, who is supported by several countries including Russia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and France.
The day before the international conference Haftar's forces blocked oil exports from Libya's main ports.
The move to cripple the country's primary income source was to protest Turkey's decision to send troops to shore up Haftar's rivals.
The military commission is expected to meet in the coming days, according to the UN, tasked with turning an existing fragile ceasefire into a permanent truce as requested by the international leaders in Berlin.
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