Libya-Malta Discuss Opening Consulate in Benghazi

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The Chairman of the Steering Council of the Municipality of Benghazi, Al-Sager Omran Bujwari met with the Ambassador of Malta to Libya, Charles Saliba. Several topics were discussed including the reopening of the Maltese Consulate in Benghazi, the strengthening of economic cooperation, and the return of Maltese companies to Libya.

Bujwari and Saliba agreed to intensify direct coordination with the Chamber of Commerce, Agriculture, and Industry in Benghazi to receive a delegation of Maltese businessmen. The meeting also discussed other issues such as cooperation in health, education, culture, and reconstruction.

Last week, Maltese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Evarist Bartolo said that “Libya is a shattered home for nearly seven million people, two thirds of them live under the poverty line, a third are displaced, and thousands of homes together with schools and hospitals were destroyed.”

In press statements, he said that there is “a lack of consistent supply of electricity and water… although Libya is one of the wealthiest countries in the Mediterranean.”

“Eleven years later we are still trying to put the pieces of Libya together after foreign military intervention which destroyed a system without thinking of the day after, like demolishing a house without planning the next stage of rebuilding it,” he added.

In April 2016, former US President, Barack Obama admitted that the “worst mistake” of his presidency was was “probably failing to plan for the day after what I think was the right thing to do in intervening in Libya”. The ouster of Muammar Gaddafi left the country spiralling into chaos and coming under threat from violent extremists.

The Maltese FM urged the international community not to repeat such mistakes in Libya. “The least we can do is to assist the Libyans in rebuilding their home, but without meddling and imposing solutions that create more problems. Libya cannot be rebuilt from on top and from the outside: it is as if trying to build a house from the roof down, it will collapse,” he noted.