Libyan PM Ready for Dialogue with Outgoing Government

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On Friday, the Libyan Prime Minister-designate, Fathi Bashagha, said that he accepted international and regional initiatives to start a political dialogue with the western-based government.

Bashagha said in a video speech after his arrival in Misurata, that he “is a peace advocate and does not seek war in Tripoli.”

Bashagha added that the outgoing Prime Minister, Abdelhamid Al-Dbaiba, refused international mediation and closed the airspace and the coastal road between Tripoli and Misurata illegally.

“I made many international and local contacts, to avoid escalation, but these countries failed to open the international airspace, and some countries offered to be mediators, but Al-Dbaiba refused,” the Libyan PM noted.

He pointed out that the Al-Dbaiba government without parliamentary and international legitimacy is now confined to Tripoli, and it will not be able to hold elections at any time, as it claims.

Bashagha stressed that his new government is determined to take over government headquarters in Tripoli. “We will not accept a parallel government, and we are determined to hold presidential and parliamentary elections together, and avoid wars,” he concluded.

Notably, the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General’s Special Adviser for Libya, Stephanie Williams, said the country’s rival Prime Ministers may hold direct talks to resolve a political crisis in Libya

Williams told Bloomberg that there’s been “positive feedback” from the two Prime Ministers, when asked if Parliament-picked Premier, Fathi Bashagha, and incumbent Abdelhamid Al-Dbaiba agreed to sit down for talks.

“The good thing is that everyone is ready to engage in constructive dialogue, and that’s what we need to build upon,” she said on Thursday in a video interview with Bloomberg.

Williams said the UN favours neither side and is “not in the business of endorsing or recognising governments.” She described elections as “the only way out of the Libyan political crisis,” and essential to renew popular legitimacy for Libya’s institutions.