Libyan Army Official: We Will Not Allow Any Foreign Forces to Remain in Our Country

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A member of Libya’s 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission (JMC), and Military Prosecutor, Major General Faraj Al-Sousa called on the government to cancel all agreements with all foreign states, “if it is truly a Government of National Unity (GNU).”

Al-Sousa claimed that the JMC’s mission is to insist on implementing the outputs of two Berlin Conference’s, including the withdrawal of all foreign forces from the country, after securing the reopening of the Coastal Road. He stated that they would demand that the United Nations hold a meeting in Geneva to meet the sponsoring countries of the Berlin I-II agreements, and ensure the withdrawal of all foreign fighters and mercenaries from the country, without any preconditions.

Turkish Defence Minister, Hulusi Akar’s recent statement, in which he claimed that Turkish forces were not unwanted foreign troops in Libya, were completely rejected by Al-Sousa. He added that the agreement that was made with the Government of National Accord (GNA) is not approved by Parliament, and is not supported by the Libyan people.

“We are determined to liberate Libya and return its freedom and independence without any foreigners in its lands. We will not allow any foreigner to enter its lands, even international observers. Our condition to the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) is that they be retired soldiers and without weapons. We will not accept any armed foreigners in our country,” he stated.

In reference to the recently reopened Coastal Road, he stated that the situation was normal, and merchants and travellers were using the road without any obstacles. He said that the JMC may hold a meeting soon to discuss unifying the military institution.

Al-Sousa pointed out that the JMC is backed by the United Nations and the Security Council, in support of the Berlin Conference outcomes, to ensure the exit of all foreign forces from Libya, “even if this leads to engaging with them in a military confrontation to expel them from the country.”

He noted that the instructions of the LNA Commander-in-Chief, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar are to “constantly follow up and relieve the suffering of citizens and not to violate agreements.” He added that media channels that are politically affiliated with militias, or those that support the Muslim Brotherhood are trying to disrupt the work of the JMC.