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Former NTC official says upcoming national conference is shrouded in mystery

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

BENGHAZI – Former member of the National Transitional Council, Abdul Hafiz Ghoga, said on Monday that the upcoming national conference is part of Ghassan Salame’s road map, presented to the Security Council in September 2017, which had four components: the revision of the Skhirat Accords [signed on 17 December 2015], the adoption of constitution, the holding of general elections and the holding of a national conference in Libya.

Speaking to Al-Hafath program, which is broadcast via Libya Al-Hadath TV, Ghoga said that after holding a meeting with UN Deputy Special Envoy, Stephanie Williams, nothing was made clear about the conference but rather it became more ambiguous.

He said that the security arrangements initiated by the UN mission in Tripoli are limited to the capital only and have nothing to do with the political agreement.

“We asked: Isn’t the Libyan south part of Libya? There are armed groups, militias and chaos. Our people in the south suffer from this, or is it [the security arrangements] related only to Tripoli?.” He said before adding, “there is no guarantee that these security arrangements even for Tripoli could take place before the national conference. Holding the conference under such circumstances is futile.”

He also reported Williams’s assertion that the conference would not exclude anyone and everyone would participate in it.

Ghoga also revealed that among the participants are members of government whom are legally sentenced and deprived of exercising their political and civil rights, in a reference to Economy Minister of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA), Ali al-Isawi.

Regarding the venue of the conference, Ghoga stressed that it will be held inside Libya and he added that holding the conference outside of the country will lead to the boycott of many components.

He said the UN mission assured him that the conference will be held within the Libyan cities and that the search for a more secure and appropriate area for the conference will end within days.

Despite the circumstances and ambiguities surrounding the UN mission in Libya, he said that the UN plan won’t have found such acceptance if it wasn’t for the failure of the political bodies, the House of Representatives and the High Council of State, to build consensus.

Ghoga stressed visions and proposals that emerge from the National Conference must be of Libyan formulation.

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