Libyan Military & Armed Groups Agree to Respect “Elections”


Libyan military factions have agreed to facilitate free and fair elections in the country this year, the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said.

UNSMIL hosted a meeting on Wednesday, for the 5+5 Joint Military Commission (JMC), in the presence of UN Envoy, Abdoulaye Bathily. A number of military commanders in the West and East of the country participated in the meeting.

Bathily endorsed the outcome and saluted the “patriotic spirit demonstrated by all participants during this meeting.” He called on all security and military leaders to “support this timely initiative.”

According to a statement by UNSMIL, the meeting aimed to “establish a safe and conducive environment for the political process, and for holding free and fair elections in 2023.” They stressed that “the interests of Libya and its people come first and transcend all personal interests of all parties.”

The participants agreed to “come together and move forward towards organizing free and fair elections in Libya this year.”

The commanders stressed the need to “abstain from using force, violence, arrest, or threats for political or material gains or for regional or factional interests.”

The statement added that the participants stressed the need to “communicate with each other and continue holding meetings inside Libya, in Tripoli and Benghazi, sending positive messages and raising hope among the Libyan people.” They reaffirmed their rejection of foreign interference in Libyan affairs.

Regarding the national reconciliation project, the members agreed to “criminalize acts of violence against civil peace that jeopardize the political process, and the holding of free and fair elections. As well as rejecting hate speech that incites citizens and adversely affects the work of the JMC and efforts of national reconciliation.”

“They agreed to criminalize acts of violence, attacks, kidnappings, and intimidation targeting civilians. In addition to preventing actions that impede or delay humanitarian aid, and the protection of civilians,” UNSMIL said.

The statement noted that “the reparation, and redress for grievances resulting from former armed conflicts, and return of IDP’s and refugees to their regions are among the most important pillars of reconciliation efforts and reunification for the Libyan people.”

The attendees agreed to “continue communication among the leaders of the security and military units for joint security work, to ensure the security of the electoral process.” The participants also reached an agreement to “refrain from restricting the movement of persons and commodities across all Libyan regions and by all means of transportation.”