U.S. “DEEPLY TROUBLED” BY ESCALATION IN LIBYA


06/08/2020




Selin ATAY-TDO- The U.S. said it is "deeply troubled" by escalating hostilities in Libya by warning intensification "will only deepen and prolong the conflict."

U.S. President Donald Trump's national security adviser Robert O'Brien said efforts to escalate the conflict risk the collective security interests U.S. and its allies in the Mediterranean.

"We strongly oppose foreign military involvement, including the use of mercenaries and private military contractors, by all sides," Robert O'Brien said in a statement. "The ongoing efforts of foreign powers to exploit the conflict – for example, by establishing an enduring military presence or exerting control over resources that belong to the Libyan people – pose grave threats to regional stability and global commerce," O’Brien added.

Libya has been mired in strife since NATO operations led to the overthrow of former leader Muammar Gadaffi in 2011.

The new government was founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement. However, efforts for a long-term political settlement have so far failed due to a military offensive by Libya’s renegade General Khalifa Haftar.

Since 2019, Haftar's forces have launched attacks on Tripoli and other parts of northwestern Libya, resulting in more than 1,000 deaths. Khalifa Haftar is supported by the UAE, Egypt and Russia while the UN-recognized government is supported by Turkey.

Robert O'Brien said following's Trump discussions with multiple world leaders regarding the conflict "it is clear there is no 'winning' side."

"As an active, but neutral, actor, the U.S is pursuing a 360-degree diplomatic engagement with Libyan and external stakeholders across the conflict to find a solution that supports Libyan sovereignty and protects the shared interests of the U.S, our allies, and partners," security adviser said.


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