Haftar: Libya's UN-backed government's mandate obsolete

Self-styled national army chief, Khalifa Haftar, says national government created by 2015 UN-backed agreement is 'void'.

    Libya descended into chaos following the 2011 uprising [Reuters]
    Libya descended into chaos following the 2011 uprising [Reuters]

    Supporters of Libyan renegade general Khalifa Haftar have rallied for him to take over the country as he insisted that the mandate of the UN-backed government in the capital, Tripoli, has expired and the institutions it created are "void". 

    The UN-brokered Libyan political agreement, signed in Morocco's Skhirat in on December 17, 2015, established Libya's Government of National Accords (GNA) for a one-year period, which could be renewed only once.

    The UN said the agreement, which aimed to unite the country's warring factions, is still in force until a new one is adopted.

    But Haftar, who backs a rival administration in the east, rejected the statement.

    "The 17th of December has arrived and brought with it the end of the so-called Skhirat agreement," Haftar, who never recognised the authority of the GNA, said in a televised appearance on Sunday night.

    "Therefore all institutions created by this agreement are void," he added.

    "These institutions have not obtained full legitimacy since the first day they started working, and as of today, Libyans feel that they have lost patience and that the promised period of peace and stability has become a faraway dream."

    'Fed up with violence' 

    The GNA has struggled to exert its authority in Tripoli and beyond, as well as rein in armed groups, including the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS). 

    In a statement, Ghassan Salame, the UN special representative to Libya, urged "all parties to heed their voices and refrain from any actions that could undermine the political process". 

    He added that Libyans are "fed up with violence and living in fear" and "hope for a political solution, for reconciliation and for harmony". 

    Libya has been locked in a state of violence since 2011, when a popular uprising ended with the overthrow and death of former President Muammar Gaddafi. 

    Despite peace efforts since then, the country has remained divided between the GNA in Tripoli, led by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj, and a Haftar-backed administration in the east. 

    A new round of UN-backed talks began in September in Tunis, aimed at preparing for presidential and parliamentary elections in 2018. 

    But the talks broke down about a month later without a deal.  


    SOURCE: Al Jazeera News


    From Zimbabwe to England: A story of war, home and identity

    The country I saw as home, my parents saw as oppressors

    What happens when you reject the identity your parents fought for and embrace that of those they fought against?

    Becoming Ocean: When you and the world are drowning

    Becoming Ocean: When you and the world are drowning

    One woman shares the story of her life with polycystic kidney disease and sees parallels with the plight of the planet.

    The evening death came for me: My journey with PTSD

    The evening death came for me: My journey with PTSD

    On a gorgeous Florida evening, a truck crashed into me. As I lay in intensive care, I learned who had been driving it.