UN envoy hails early agreements in Libya talks



The U.N. envoy for Libya said Wednesday the two warring factions have agreed on issues that “directly impact the lives and welfare of the Libyan people,” noting that the thorny work to cement a cease-fire in the restive North African country will continue.
Stephanie Turco Williams, the U.N. envoy, cited agreements to open air and land routes in the country, to work to ease inflammatory rhetoric in Libyan media, and to help kickstart Libya’s vital oil industry, as talks in Geneva continued this week under her mediation.
“I am pleased to report that the two sides have reached agreement on several important issues which directly impact the lives and welfare of the Libyan people,” she said. “I urge the two parties negotiating here in Geneva to solve all outstanding issues and forge a lasting cease fire agreement.”
Williams hailed “emerging hope” and “positive developments” for Libya’s future, while warning of socioeconomic troubles, rising cases of COVID-19 and the continued intervention and meddling of foreign powers in Libya’s internal conflict.
Libya is split between a U.N.-supported government in the capital, Tripoli, and rival authorities based in the east. The two sides are backed by an array of local militias as well as regional and foreign powers. The country was plunged into chaos after the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that toppled and killed longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi.—AP

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