Libyan political factions due to open talks

Supporters of Libya's rival Tobruk and Tripoli assemblies to hold first talks aimed healing rift.

    Libyan political factions due to open talks
    Faraj Hashem said the House of Representatives would not talk to Misrata militia leaders

    Opposing political factions in Libya are due to meet for UN-brokered talks to heal a rift that has left the country with rival parliaments.

    Members of Libya's internationally recognised House of Representatives said on Monday they were due to meet deputies from Misrata who had boycotted the parliament in favour of a rival assembly sitting in Tripoli.

    The assembly fled to Tobruk last month after militias from Misrata took over the capital, Tripoli, and installed their own parliament dubbed the "national council".

    Faraj Hashem, a spokesman for the House, said there would be no dialogue with the militias at the talks.

    "We welcome the dialogue but it will be with the deputies who have boycotted the previous sessions," he told the Reuters news agency. "This is a principal condition."

    Ali Tekbali, a Tripoli politician, said the talks would be compromised without the involvement of the Misrata militias, over which the Tripoli deputies "have no power".

    Al Jazeera understands that the meeting will be attended by 12 members from each side and international monitors.

    The UN mission in Libya said earlier this month that the talks, in the southern town of Ghadames, aim to reach a "framework agreement on the rules of procedures" for parliament and another on "the critical issues relating to the governance of the country"

    They come a day after the Tobruk assembly swore in its prime minister, Abdullah al-Thinni, and his cabinet.

    The House of Representatives was formed after national election in June and agreed on a second cabinet list last week, after rejecting an initial 16-member lineup as too large.

    The new cabinet has 13 ministers including three deputies for Thinni and no oil minister. The vital oil sector will be run
    by state firm National Oil Corporation.

    Thinni, a former career soldier, has been prime minister since March but had resigned after the June elections. Politicians then asked him to again form a new government.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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