The Address | Benghazi – Libya
TUNIS – The United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, said he is hopeful for a solution to the eight-year long conflict in Libya, after a high-level meeting in Tunisia on Saturday with officials from the Arab League, the European Union and the African Union — the group known as the ‘Libya Quartet’.
“If is there is a word that defines what I think and feel about Libya today that word is hope. This is a moment of hope for Libya,” said the UN Secretary General in a press conference after the meeting. “I have hope because I believe that it is possible to have now a Libyan-led political process aiming at the solution of the Libyan problems.”
The meeting in Tunis included Federica Mogherini, European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Secretary-General of the Arab League, Moussa Faki, Chairperson of the African Union Commission; and Ghassan Salamé, UN Special Representative in Libya.
Announcing that the meeting had led to “intensified forms of cooperation among our four organizations to work more and more together in support of a Libyan-led political process,” the UN chief said.
“The Libyan leaders will understand the enormous responsibility that they have, that they will be able to come together in solutions for the future of Libya, to the benefit of the Libyan people and to the benefit of the whole region as we all know the impact of Libya in the Sahel and many other parts of Africa, even in Europe”. He added.
He mentioned three key steps for a successful outcome: the Libyan National Conference to take place in two weeks; the upcoming conference of peace and reconciliation to take place in Addis Ababa, headquarters of the African Union; elections “at the right moment for the country to re-establish a normal political life.”
For most of the period since the 2011 overthrow of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi, Libya has been contested by various militias, leading to a breakdown of the economy, infrastructure and security across the country.