Egypt-Italy Discuss Libyan Crisis


On Wednesday, Egyptian President, Abdel-Fattah El Sisi held talks with Italian Defence Minister, Guido Crosetto in Cairo. They focused on strengthening military cooperation, in addition to the latest regional developments, especially with regard to the ongoing crisis in Libya.

The two agreed on the importance of pursuing “political solutions for various regional crises within the framework of protecting states’ unity, and the safety of lands.”

As for the Libyan file, El Sisi stressed the need to “meet the Libyan people’s aspirations for restoring security and stability, and moving ahead toward the development and prosperity of their country.”

He also reiterated Egypt’s “firm stance to help create the required climate for holding Libya’s Presidential and Parliamentary elections simultaneously.”

In turn, Crosetto stressed that Rome is “working for the stability of Libya, and to end the flow of migrants to European countries, especially Italy.”

Notably, Libya’s eastern-based Parliament voted to suspend its designated Prime Minister, Fathi Bashagha. It appointed his Finance Minister, Osama Hamada to his role, the Parliamentary Spokesman, Abdullah Blaiheg said Tuesday.

In February 2022, the Libyan Parliament elected the former Interior Minister to replace Abdel-Hamid Dbaiba. This was part of a United Nations-backed peace process to end more than a decade of violence in the North African country.

Dbaiba failed in his key task of organizing elections in December, at which point the Parliament ruled that his mandate had run out. The Tripoli-based Prime Minister refused to hand over power before elections, preparing a showdown with Bashagha.

Dbaiba has previously confirmed that he will “remain in office until all Libyan parties agree on electoral laws that are internationally welcomed, and start announcing specific dates for the elections.”

Dbaiba came to power following a landmark 2020 ceasefire that ended a year-long battle when the General Commander of the Libyan National Army (LNA) Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar tried, unsuccessfully, to seize the capital.

The transitional government had a mandate to lead the country to elections, which never took place due to divisions over the rules and the presence of controversial candidates.

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.