UN envoy proposes truce in Libya during Eid Al-Adha, warns of violations of arms embargo

Ghassan Salame speaking at the UN Security Council via video conference. [Photo: UNSMIL]
The United Nations envoy to Libya Ghassan Salame called on Monday for a truce to be declared in Libya during Eid Al-Adha on August 10-14.

Briefing the UN Security Council on the latest fighting in Tripoli, Salame warned that an influx of weapons from foreign supporters in violation of an arms embargo was fuelling the conflict.

“The truce should be declared to mark the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday, and be accompanied by confidence-building moves like an exchange of prisoners and remains and release of those arbitrarily detained.” Salame remarked.

“In the course of the current fighting, serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law by all parties have been committed,” Salame told Security Council.

He added that more than ever, Libyans are now fighting the wars of other countries who appear content to fight to the last Libyan and to see the country entirely destroyed in order to settle their own scores.

“Armed drones, armoured vehicles and pickup trucks fitted with heavy armaments, machine guns, recoilless rifles, mortar and rocket launchers, have been recently transferred to Libya with the complicity and indeed outright support of foreign governments,” Salame said.

Salame also proposed a high-level meeting of concerned countries be convened to “cement the cessation of hostilities, work together to enforce the strict implementation of the arms embargo to prevent the further flow of weapons to the Libyan theatre; and promote strict adherence to international humanitarian and human rights law by Libyan parties.”

He said this should then be followed by a meeting of leading and influential Libyans to agree on a way forward out of the conflict.

“This triple action will require consensus in this council and amongst the member states who exert influence on the ground,” Salame explained.

The Security Council has struggled to unify on how to deal with the renewed violence.

Shortly after Haftar began his offensive, the United States and Russia both told council colleagues that they could not support a resolution that would have called for a ceasefire in Libya.

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