Libyan Tribal Leaders: Country on Verge of Civil War

Libyan Tribal Leaders
Libyan Tribal Leaders

On Saturday, the tribal notables and social leaders of the Western Region said that Libya is now on the brink of civil war in light of a collapsed political situation and a foreign conspiracy against the country.

In a statement, the tribal leaders stressed the “need to maintain the unity of the national territory.”

They also highlighted the importance of holding presidential and parliamentary elections as soon as possible. They furthermore called for releasing all prisoners, especially detainees from the Qasr Abu Hadi district, (20 kilometers away from the city of Sirte).

The Heads of the tribes, which are loyal to Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, also stressed that Libya is one country that cannot be divided. They noted that despite the current political crises, the people “will remain united.”

They also denounced all attempts to divide and fracture the country, which has been plagued by prolonged crises. They said that it is necessary to put an end to the current political struggle for power and reach a national compromise leading to fair elections.

The tribal notables rejected the policy of exclusion and marginalisation, stressing the need to engage all political spectrums to participate in the electoral process.

In addition, they urged the United Nations (UN) to adopt effective national solutions that lead the country to safety.” We hope that the UN Special Envoy to Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily, will be able to understand the complexities of the current situation and achieve the aspirations of the people.

Meanwhile, the United States (US) Special Envoy and Ambassador to Libya, Richard Norland, said Washington may reevaluate its relationships with actors and institutions that delay and obstruct progress toward political solutions. He cautioned that the status quo is not sustainable.

The remarks came in a statement by the US Embassy on Friday, saying that Norland visited Tripoli on November 8th to the 10th for meetings with government officials, international partners, and the donor community including representatives from the Government of National Unity (GNU), the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), the World Bank, Presidential Council, High State Council (HCS), and the High National Election Commission (HNEC).

During his visit, Norland underscored the urgency of concrete steps to establish a constitutional basis for credible, transparent elections in keeping with the aspirations of the Libyan people. He appealed to all Libyan leaders and institutions to use their influence to push toward this goal.

Norland lauded the unanimously approved recent extension of the UNSMIL mandate as an opportunity to reset a credible roadmap for elections, achieve the necessary buy-in from key actors, and establish reasonable timelines for the international community to rally behind.

He reiterated the US’ support for Abdoulaye Bathily,and for the Libyan people’s right to live in a democratic and sovereign Libya defended by a unified Libyan military not reliant on foreign powers.

“The continued threat of oil shutdowns, recent militia clashes, and the public outcry after the Audit Bureau report all highlight the need for greater financial transparency and accountability for the benefit and prosperity of all Libyans.

The US chose Libya as a key country in its Strategy to Prevent Conflict and Promote Stability. The US “is committed to partnering with Libyans in support of a more stable and prosperous future, led by an elected, unified government that provides needed services and builds on the natural resources of the country.” the statement said.