US House of Representatives members ask Secretary of State to clarify US policy in Libya

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. [Photo: Internet]

A group of US lawmakers has asked President Donald Trump’s administration to clarify its policy on Libya, saying armed groups in the country were using confusion over the White House’s stance to justify engaging in conflict. 

In a letter to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday, eight members of the House of Representatives urged the White House to “clearly” reject a military offensive launched by Khalifa Haftar to seize the capital, Tripoli, from the country’s internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA).

In the letter, the members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs said the generic read-out of Trump’s call with Haftar has led to perceived uncertainty regarding the US position.

The letter of the the bipartisan group, which included six Democrats and two Republicans, says “Libyan armed actors are now using that confusion over US policy as justification to continue the conflict, further jeopardizing prospects for a political settlement and threatening regional stability.”

The lawmakers said the current offensive on Tripoli is leaving a security vacuum similar to that exploded by ISIS in 2014, adding that “the best way to prevent further terrorist attacks is to reach a ceasefire and return to a political process.”

“We therefore request that you publicly clarify that the US opposes a military solution in Libya and that the US condemns all actors undermining stability and perpetuating violence.” The letter reads.

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