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Asharq Al-Awsat
Asharq Al-Awsat
Cairo - Khaled Mahmoud

US Mediates between Libya’s Parliament, High Council of State

The Libyan parliament meets in Tobruk on Tuesday. (Parliament's press office)

The Libyan Presidential Council sought US mediation to resolve the ongoing disputes between the Speaker of Libya’s House of Representatives (HoR), Aguila Saleh, and the Chairman of the High Council of State (HCS) Khalid al-Mishri.

The US and the international and local community fear an outbreak of a new armed conflict in Tripoli between militias loyal to the interim Government of National Unity (GNU), headed by Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah, and militias loyal to parliament-appointed Fathi Bashagha, who chairs the "stability" cabinet.

Member of the Presidential Council Abdullah al-Lafi discussed with US Ambassador Richard Norland the Council’s efforts to address Libya's political and security situation.

During a phone call, Lafi and Norland agreed that parties should avoid any step that could provoke violence.

Lafi sought to convince Norland to mediate between Saleh and Mishri after sources close to the two parties confirmed the failure of their recent meeting in Cairo.

Lafi and Norland commended the Council for its work in promoting national reconciliation and welcomed the African Union (AU) role in this regard.

The ambassador applauded the Presidential Council's engagement with key leaders and noted the intensive discussions that were held in Ankara, Cairo, and Libya.

"The US urges the GNU to continue engagement with Libyan institutions to pave the way for presidential and parliamentary elections as soon as possible," he remarked.

They stressed that work would continue to resolve all political issues that are impeding stability, paving the way for holding presidential and parliamentary elections and avoiding any escalation that might threaten the political process and the safety of civilians.

On Monday, Saleh and Mishri arrived in Cairo for a meeting aimed at discussing the Libyan crisis.

Saleh’s media advisor Abdul Hamid al-Safi said the meeting addressed the contentious constitutional issues, namely the case of dual nationals and the right of military personnel to vote.

Safi noted that Saleh and Mishri agreed to return to their councils for further consultation and to reach a final agreement on the draft constitution regarding the constitutional framework.

Well-informed sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Saleh and Mishri would return to Cairo after ten days.

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