World, Europe

Germany to host Libya peace conference on Sunday

Chancellor Merkel invites world, regional powers, Libya’s warring sides to talks in Berlin

Ayhan Şimşek   | 14.01.2020
Germany to host Libya peace conference on Sunday

BERLIN

Germany Tuesday invited Libya’s warring parties, as well as global and regional powers to a peace conference in Berlin on Sunday to facilitate a political solution to the Libya conflict.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s office announced that Libya’s UN-recognized government, the eastern Libya-based commander Khalifa Haftar, and leaders from eleven countries, including Russia, Turkey, Italy, Egypt and United Arab Emirates (UAE), were invited to the conference.

The announcement came following Russia-hosted talks late Monday for Libyan peace.

But talks for a permanent cease-fire deal ended without an agreement on Monday after Haftar left Moscow demanding two days to consult with local Libyan tribes for their approval, while the head of Libya's Government of National Accord (GNA) Fayez al-Sarraj signed the cease-fire deal.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has expressed hope that the Berlin conference would contribute to political solution to the Libyan conflict.

Speaking to reporters in Berlin, Maas said participating countries have already reached a common understanding on a document after a series of working-level talks in the last couple of months.

“In this conference, we would like to once again discuss this [document] with all the participants, and if we succeed, we will also approve it,” he said.

Germany’s top diplomat said this document seeks to ensure that conflict parties would cease military operations and return to political talks under United Nations auspices.

On Jan. 12, the warring sides of the Libyan conflict announced a cease-fire in response to a call by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Since the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, two seats of power have emerged in Libya: one in eastern Libya supported mainly by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, and the other in Tripoli, which enjoys UN and international recognition.

In April, Haftar launched an offensive to capture Tripoli which has drawn international condemnation.

According to the UN, more than 1,000 people have been killed since the start of the operation and more than 5,000 others injured.

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