Schenker: Not Possible to Resolve Libya’s Conflict Militarily


US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, David Schenker, said that it is not possible to resolve the Libyan conflict militarily.

Schenker said, in an interview with the Brookings Institution, that he and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo devote a lot of time to the Libyan issue. He is also continuously discussing the matter with his British and French counterparts.

On Wednesday, the Arab League called on Turkey to withdraw all its forces from the territories of member states. It issued a statement regarding “Turkish interference” in the affairs of Arab countries. Qatar, Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA), Somalia, and Djibouti had reservations about the decision.

Schenker added that there are American efforts to “reform the United Nations mission” in Libya.

“We will get a special envoy to deal with the negotiations” in Libya, in addition to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who did “a great job.” He described the situation in Libya as “difficult”, because the key players are “very stubborn.”

He noted that there are “a lot of efforts being made by US diplomats, and European partners to push the GNA, and the Libyan National Army (LNA), to engage productively in the negotiations.”

“We are seeing the fruits of this now. It is difficult to be optimistic about it, but we are pushing forward in an attempt to achieve small gains on the ground,” he concluded.