UAE Supports Establishment of High-level Steering Panel for Libya


The UAE Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Security Council, Mohamed Abushahab said that he supports the UN Special Representative to Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily’s proposal to establish a High-level steering panel for Libya.

During his speech at the Security Council’s Libya session, he said: “We hope that this proposal will achieve the goals and consensus sought by the Libyans. For these steps to succeed and translate into action on the ground, the international community must show collective support, free from geopolitical tension. It also requires full cooperation from the Libyan people.”

Abushahab stressed the need to consult and coordinate with the Libyans on Bathily’s proposal.

The UAE diplomat noted that Libya was only a few steps away from holding elections. “For reasons known to all, the date of the elections was postponed. Since then, the concerned parties have fallen into successive and endless rounds of consultations to reach an agreement on a constitutional basis. This has not only prolonged the process and made it repetitive, but it has also taken a turn which does not serve the national interest of the Libyan people. Therefore, we do not see a way out of this political impasse other than coming together and supporting Mr. Bathily’s efforts towards enabling Libyans to reach a Libyan-owned political settlement – one that is acceptable to the parties, leads to holding simultaneous Parliamentary and Presidential elections this year, and results in the establishment of a unified government.”

The Emirati representative applauded the “important role played by neighbouring countries in bringing diverging views closer together, particularly the efforts of Egypt with the support of the UN Mission.”

Abushahab stressed the need to promote the “full, equal, and meaningful participation of Libyan women in all aspects of the political process, such as those related to the elections and next steps in this regard.”

He emphasised the need to ensure the protection of women and girls against violence, including online. “We further stress the importance of involving youth in the political processes, considering their pivotal role in building and sustaining peace. We, therefore welcome the inclusiveness of the proposed mechanism by the Special Representative to strengthen the participation of women and youth.”

The UAE diplomat stated: “In conjunction with the efforts made to reach a comprehensive political settlement that ends the transitional periods, we must continue advancing the path of comprehensive and just national reconciliation to ensure sustainable peace in Libya. Accordingly, the UAE reaffirms its support for the efforts of the Libyan Presidential Council, the African Union, and UNSMIL, including through the Preparatory Forum for the National Reconciliation Conference. We look forward to the next steps in the implementation of the national reconciliation strategy with the participation of all parties.”

Abushahab pointed out that “continuing to respect the ceasefire agreement is essential for maintaining stability throughout Libya. It is encouraging that the meetings of the 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission (JMC) are continuing with the participation of representatives from neighbouring countries, as well as local and international ceasefire monitors under the auspices of the UN Mission. Their efforts must be accompanied by the implementation of the remaining elements of the ceasefire agreement, and by taking serious steps on the ground towards unifying the military institution in Libya. We support the efforts aimed at creating a joint military force as a basis for achieving unity.”

He reiterated the UAE’s request for a “simultaneous, phased, gradual, and balanced withdrawal of foreign forces, foreign fighters, and mercenaries, in order to achieve peace and stability in Libya. We welcome the establishment of a joint coordination mechanism for collecting and exchanging data on this matter.”

To ensure security throughout Libya, “combating terrorism and maintaining the gains made in countering extremism must remain a priority. Furthermore, the measures and tools adopted by this Council should not impede national efforts by the Libyan forces to address security threats, especially in southern Libya,” the UAE official said.

“We also note that restoring stability in Libya will support the security and stability of all countries in the region, especially neighbouring countries. As such, we support regional efforts aimed at addressing irregular migration, while taking into account Libyan and African concerns. The international community must provide support to the countries of origin, as well as countries of transit, to address the root causes of migration,” he confirmed.

“Despite the laudable efforts made by the relevant authorities to keep pace and address the various challenges facing Libya, more steps must be taken to improve “the program of disclosure, transparency and governance”, especially with regard to expenditures,” the official stated.

He added that “this will ensure the equitable distribution of resources, preservation of vital institutions, and the protection and preservation of the assets of the Libyan people for future generations. This is particularly important in the context of the Secretary-General’s reference in his report to Da’esh’s exploitation of the current situation on the ground to generate revenue through smuggling oil.”

Abushahab confirmed the UAE’s solidarity with the Libyan people and supports their endeavours to live in a safe and prosperous country, that paves the way for a peaceful future full of opportunity.