UN: New Government in Libya ‘Up to the People’

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Spokesman for the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, Stephane Dujarric discussed the recent events surrounding the assignment of a new Prime Minister in Libya.

“We have a Prime Minister whom UN Advisor Stephanie Williams met, Abdel-Hamid Dbaiba, and a Prime Minister-designate, Fathi Bashagha who has a deadline to name a government, and it’s up to the Libyan people,” Dujarric said in a press conference on Monday. He stressed that there should be no violence, and there should be no use of force.

“Libyan leaders must move forward in a peaceful, consensual, transparent, and inclusive manner to maintain stability in Tripoli,” he added. The UN official urged Libyan leaders to prioritize the interests of the 2.8 million citizens who registered for the elections.

On Friday, UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres called on all parties in Libya to preserve peace and security. This came after the Libyan Parliament appointed Fathi Bashagha to replace Prime Minister, Abdel-Hamid Dbaiba.

Meanwhile, the US Embassy in Libya expressed its support for the Secretary-General’s message regarding consensus, stability, and elections in Libya.

“The Secretary-General is following closely the situation in Libya. He takes note of the vote taken on 10 February, by the Libyan Parliament in consultation with the High State Council (HCS). This is to adopt the constitutional amendment, which charts a path for the revision of the 2017 Constitutional Draft and the electoral process,” Dujarric said.

“The UN Secretary-General calls on all parties and institutions to continue to ensure that such critical decisions are taken in a transparent and consensual manner. He also takes note of the vote by the Libyan Parliament to designate a new Prime Minister,” the statement noted.

On Thursday, Speaker of the Libyan Parliament, Ageela Saleh announced that they unanimously appointed Fathi Bashagha as the new Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Dbaiba said in a speech that he would not hand over power until after elections. “Only elections will end the transitional stages,” he claimed.

Observers fear that Libya will return to having two opposing governments, given Dbaiba’s refusal to cede power to a rival government.