No Truce In Sight
It appears there’s still a long way to go before rival factions in Libya agree on uniting the country.
What’s the latest there?
In a statement that suggested that both sides have not reached an agreement on the way forward, the leader of the Libyan National Army, which controls the country’s east, Khalifa Haftar declared Saturday “a final opportunity” to draw up a plan for elections in Libya. The statement came on the 71st anniversary of Libya’s independence, as General Khalifa Haftar spoke to Libyans in Benghazi, the country’s second-largest city and the base of his forces. The rival factions had previously agreed on a date for the election, but the agreement fell apart.
Why did it fall apart?
The country has been divided since the 2011 assassination of long-term leader, Muammar Gaddafi, as rival groups battle to take control of the government. It has been one year since the opposing factions agreed to hold elections. Following a 2020 ceasefire, the warring eastern and western sides installed a new unity government and agreed to hold elections on December 24, 2021. However, the process failed, and the national institutions remained divided.
Following the country’s breakup in 2014, Haftar launched an effort to seize Tripoli that lasted 14 months but was repelled by the internationally recognized government in the country’s west. As its political impasse worsens, Libya runs the possibility of re-entering civil war as politicians obstruct election-related efforts and military officials threaten to use force.