The co-chairs of the Security Working Group (SWG) for Libya, represented by the African Union, France, Italy, Turkey, and the United Kingdom and the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) held a meeting on Thursday in Tunis to discuss the security situation in the country.
The African Intelligence website had reported earlier on December 2nd that U.N. Special Envoy Abdoulaye Bathily had invited international special envoys to the Thursday meeting and raised this issue during his recent international tour, which included Ankara, Doha and Abu Dhabi.
He reportedly wanted the SWG meeting in Tunis to be held before the his briefing to Security Council on December 16th.
The SWG meeting was attended by members of Libya’s 5+5 Joint Military Commission (JMC), Italy’s Special Envoy to Libya Nicola Orlando and British Ambassador to Libya Caroline Hurndall. Representing the U.S. in the meeting were Ambassador Richard Norland and Chargé d’Affaires Leslie Ordeman. Representing France were Ambassador Mostafa Mihraje and Special Envoy to Libya Paul Soler.
During the meeting, U.S. Ambassador Norland affirmed his country’s support for Bathily and “Libyan military professionals in their efforts to remove foreign forces, fighters, and mercenaries and unify Libya’s military,” as quoted by the American Embassy in a statement via Twitter.
“Libyans deserve a united military capable of defending Libya’s sovereignty just as they deserve a democratically elected government that represents all Libyans,” Norland was quoted as saying by his country’s embassy. “The U.S. looks forward to partnering with such a military under the civilian authority of such a government.”
It’s noteworthy that Security Working Group is part of the international follow-up committee responsible for implementing what Libyan agreed in the context of Berlin process.
The last SWG meeting was held last June in Tunisia in the presence of former advisor to the U.N. Secretary-General, Stephanie Williams, who stressed the importance in maintaining stability and clam on territory.
2/2 Libyans deserve a united military capable of defending #Libya’s sovereignty just as they deserve a democratically elected government that represents all Libyans. The U.S. looks forward to partnering with such a military under the civilian authority of such a government.”
— U.S. Embassy – Libya (@USEmbassyLibya) December 8, 2022