Libya’s Eastern Government Warns Against Imposition of U.N.-Backed Cabinet
An article from Reuters outlines the complexity and risk surrounding the unity government-in-waiting, its calls for transfer of power, and plans to move from Tunis to Tripoli. The piece notes deadlock from the eastern government and describes Western pressure for the unity government to begin work.
The eastern government said in a statement on Friday that while it supported the unity cabinet, any attempt to impose it represented an “abuse of Libyan sovereignty and a lack of respect for the democratic process”.
One reason for deadlock over the unity government is the demand from some in the east that the army there and its commander, Khalifa Haftar, should not be sidelined in a political transition.
The internationally-recognized eastern parliament has repeatedly failed to vote to approve the unity government, but a majority of its members signed a statement of support last month.
The United States and European powers cited that statement when they declared on Sunday that the unity cabinet was the “only legitimate government in Libya”.
On Tuesday, the prime minister of the government based in Tripoli warned the unity cabinet not to move there. On Thursday, one of the many armed factions in the capital, the Libya Revolutionaries, said it was prepared for a “long war” in Tripoli if other groups tried to protect the unity government.
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