Published: January 22, 2020
Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj questioned the reasons for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to establish a military base in its eastern territory and stressed the importance of a political solution to the conflict.
In an exclusive interview with Al Jazeera, the head of the National Agreement Government (GNA), based in Tripoli and internationally recognized, said Tuesday that Abu Dhabi has interfered in his country by supporting the renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar, head of the Headquarters in the East National Army of Libya (LNA).
"Libya has no common borders with the UAE," al-Sarraj said, adding that "it raises a question about its goals to interfere,quot; in the country.
Libya has been shaken by turmoil since leader Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in a NATO-backed uprising in 2011.
Since then, the oil-rich country has been divided between two rival administrations based in the east and west of the country in the middle of a conflict that attracts a growing participation of foreign powers. Since April, the GNA has been attacked by forces loyal to Haftar, which on January 6 captured the strategic coastal city of Sirte.
The Haftar forces are supported by the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Al-Sarraj also accused Paris of supporting Haftar and tacitly endorsing his assault on Tripoli, claims denied by French officials.
Conflict in Libya: EU presses to shore up ceasefire
& # 39; Cautiously optimistic & # 39;
Al-Sarraj also said that Haftar "is not a serious partner for peace in Libya," and that he will not sit with the military commander again after Sunday's summit in Berlin.
The summit, organized by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, sought a stronger commitment from world powers and regional actors not to interfere in Libya and genuinely support a fragile truce and adhere to the UN arms embargo.
It was the last of many diplomatic attempts aimed at pushing Libya on a path to peace.
Haftar agreed to appoint members for a military commission proposed by the UN with five members on each side to monitor the implementation of the truce.
Based on past experiences where the GNA could not find a political partner, al-Sarraj said he was "cautiously optimistic,quot; after the Berlin summit.
"Everyone has realized that there is no military solution in Libya, "he told Al Jazeera." And although the party (of Haftar) does not believe in a political solution, the hope is that the parties loyal to him (he) will reconsider their intentions so that the political process for a solution can resume. "
In analyzing Libya's vital oil reserves, al-Sarraj said the nation of North Africa will face a "catastrophic situation,quot; if Haftar forces continue to block oil fields. He expressed the hope that foreign powers will pressure Haftar to reopen oil ports soon.
On January 12, the belligerent parties announced a truce in response to a joint call from the Turkish and Russian leaders. However, talks for a permanent ceasefire ended without an agreement after Haftar left Moscow without signing the agreement. source