AU Commission chief welcomes Libya ceasefire

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A member of the Libyan National Army (LNA) commanded by Khalifa Haftar sits in a tent at one of their sites in west of Sirte, Libya August 19, 2020. Picture taken August 19, 2020. REUTERS/Esam Omran Al-Fetori

The African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat has welcomed the ceasefire announced by Libya’s warring factions on Friday.

Mahamat said in a statement that the ceasefire “facilitate dialogue initiatives as well as the resumption of the work of the United Nations Joint Military Commission”, and put the North African country back on track towards achieving lasting peace.

“This announcement is likely to relaunch the inter-Libyan political dialogue as well as the implementation of the roadmap adopted by the African Union High Level Committee on Libya on January 30, 2020 in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo,” he said.

Libya has been dogged by a civil war for years, sparked by the killing of former long-serving president Muammar Gadaffi.

The war has killed thousands and displaced hundreds of thousands as each faction claims legitimacy.

Forces loyal to the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) under Fayez al-Sarraj and those under eastern commander Khalifa Haftar have been receiving support from various countries in their quest to take control of the country.

The ceasefire agreement was also welcomed by the United Nations.

In his statement, Mahamat pledged the AU’s support of the ceasefire and called upon the international community to support  the efforts.

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