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Libya’s Bashagha Denounces UN’s ‘Misleading’ Remarks

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Libya’s Parliament-backed government denounced the “misleading” statements made by the United Nations (UN) Under-Secretary-General, Rosemary DiCarlo, about the developments of events in Libya. DiCarlo made the remarks during a UN Security Council session on Libya on Thursday.

She said that the Parliament-backed government led by Fathi Bashagha tried to enter Libya’s capital Tripoli last week “by force and with the support of armed militias.”

However, Prime Minister Bashagha rejected these “misleading accusations” and said that he entered Tripoli peacefully. “What was said about the government entering Tripoli with an armed group is baseless,” Bashagha said in a tweet.

According to the UN official, Bashagha’s attempt was accompanied by the outbreak of armed clashes, which were extinguished after mediation by Libya’s local actors.

Libya’s Prime Minister also called on the UN to correct this error, in order to preserve its role in promoting peace and adherence to complete impartiality.

Bashagha affirmed his commitment to “following the path of peace and elections in Libya, and the renunciation of all forms of violence.”

For its part, Libya’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Bashagha government condemned what was stated in DiCarlo’s briefing. In a statement, the Ministry confirmed that the UN mission had to “check the accuracy of transmitting information.”

It indicated that this information was incorrect and the Prime Minister entered the capital by a civilian vehicle, stressing that it “challenges any entity or person claiming to enter Bashagha in an armed way.”

Last week, Bashagha condemned the armed escalation carried out by militias affiliated with Libya’s Government of National Unity (GNU) in Tripoli.

Bashagha said he was surprised by the “dangerous military escalation,” despite him and his Ministers entering Tripoli peacefully.

He also condemned the endangerment of civilians describing it as “a crime punishable by law.” He stressed that his government cannot “contribute to compromising the security of the capital, and its residents.”

Bashagha had entered overnight, in the hope of taking over the government headquarters. He was quickly met by opposition from forces aligned with incumbent Prime Minister, Abdelhamid Al-Dbaiba. This is Bashagha’s second failed attempt to enter Tripoli.

The Prime Minister’s media office said he left left Tripoli hours after his arrival, “to stop the bloodshed and ensure the safety and security of the people.”

Notably, the eastern-based Libyan Parliament announced the unanimous appointment of Bashagha as the new Prime Minister on the 10th of February. However, Dbaiba warned that the appointment of a new interim government could lead to war and chaos in the country. Al-Dbaiba has renewed his pledge to only hand power over to an elected government.

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