Haftar tells French President: No ceasefire in Tripoli for now

Khalifa Haftar giving a speech on December 17, 2017. (Photo: Screengarb.)

Khalifa Haftar, speaking on Wednesday with French President Emmanuel Macron, ruled out a ceasefire.

Reuters reported that Haftar told Macron that he wanted to rid the capital of militias that had “infested” the U.N.-backed government.

A French presidential official told Reuters that the distrust we see between the Libyan actors is stronger than ever today.

According to the official, Haftar considers that the GNA is completely infested by militias and it is not for him to negotiate with representatives of these militias.

The official said Macron had asked Haftar to make a public step towards a ceasefire and Haftar responded by saying that an inclusive political dialogue was necessary and he would be ready for it if the conditions for a ceasefire were in place.

“But Haftar had given no indication as to when he would be ready for any potential talks.” He added.

Mwanwhile, speaking on Euronews TV on Wednesday, the Head of the Presidential Council Fayez Al-Sirraj alo ruled out a ceasefire, warning that the fighting would not stop until Haftar’s troops had pulled back east.

The official also said Haftar had rejected suggestions he or forces loyal to him were benefiting from oil sales in the east of the country, according to Reuters.

The war on Tripoli has killed at least 510 people, forced 75,000 out of their homes, trapped thousands of migrants in detention centres, and flattened some southern suburbs.

It has also forced closures of schools, split families on different sides of the front line, and brought power and water cuts.

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