Libyan PM urges army unification for national security

Libya’s UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez Serraj said on Saturday that the unification of the army is crucial for the security of the country.

Serraj made the remarks during his meeting with the government’s military dialogue committee on the unification of the army.

“The unification of the military institution is absolutely necessary to secure the borders and face the challenges in the country,” he was cited by a statement by the media office of the prime minister as saying.

“This is what all parties must realize to work hard and have a national responsibility to ensure the success of the political consensus process,” Serraj added.

The committee briefed the prime minister on the recent talks in Cairo that aimed to unite Libya’s divided armed forces.

Following the 2011 uprising which toppled former leader Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, Libya has been suffering insecurity and political division, with divided authorities in the east and the west, including the army.

Since October 2017, Egypt has hosted extensive meetings that brought together a number of Libyan military officers to establish a united army.

Serraj and Khalifa Haftar, the commander of the eastern-based army, met twice in 2017, respectively in May in the United Arab Emirates and in June in order to develop a strategy to unify the Libyan army and integrate the military institution under civilian authority.