The Address | Benghazi – Libya
BRUSSELS – The European Union will discuss all ways to uphold a formal ceasefire in Libya but any peace settlement will need real EU support to make it hold, the EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell said on Monday.
Asked about whether the EU could consider a military peace-keeping mission, Borrell said: “A ceasefire requires someone to take care of it. You cannot say, ‘this is a ceasefire’ and forget about it … Someone has to monitor it, to manage it.”
Also asked if the EU’s naval mission off the Libyan coast could be restarted, he said: “I think we have to revive it, yes.”
The EU ceased maritime patrols under its EU operation, called Sophia, at the end of March last year after Italy, where anti-migrant sentiment is rising, said it would no longer receive those rescued at sea.
EU governments did want the mission to continue because they felt it had been effective in dissuading people smugglers and upholding a U.N arms embargo on Libya, meaning Rome’s position remains central to putting boats back on the water.