On Tuesday, Cairo hosted a meeting of the Libyan 5 + 5 Joint Military Committee (JMC) under the auspices of the United Nations.
The JMC meeting will be held over two days, to discuss plans to remove mercenaries and foreign forces from the country. This will be attended by the UN Envoy to Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily, and representatives of Libya’s neighbouring countries, Sudan, Chad, and Niger.
In his speech during the meeting, Bathily expressed his thanks and appreciation to the Egyptian government for hosting the meeting, and for its continuous support and efforts to bring peace and stability to Libya.
He also thanked the JMC for its efforts to implement the ceasefire agreement and the steps it has taken so far, in order to activate the action plan signed in Geneva in October 2021 under the auspices of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL).
“The discussion that will take place over the next two days, is to activate the communication committees agreed upon in November 2021 in Cairo. This is within the framework of preparing for the withdrawal of foreign fighters and mercenaries, and spreading hope among the Libyans,” Bathily said.
He stressed that the security track “is an important pillar to pave the way for establishing a favourable political and economic environment.”
The UN Envoy noted that the last meeting of the JMC, which was held on 15-16 January 2023, “made progress, including the nomination of members of the Libyan Liaison Committee, to enable them to work hand in hand with their counterparts from Sudan, Chad and Niger.”
Libya has been in chaos since a NATO-backed uprising toppled longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The county has for years been split between rival administrations, each backed by rogue militias and foreign governments.
The current stalemate grew out of the failure to hold elections in December, and the refusal of Prime Minister Abdel-Hamid Dbaiba, who is leading the transitional government, to step down. In response, the country’s eastern-based Parliament appointed a rival Prime Minister, Fathi Bashagha, who has for months sought to install his government in Tripoli.