EU council president and Egypt's Sisi discuss Libyan feud

13.01.2020

Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi and European Council President Charles Michel discussed Libya's conflict on Sunday amid intense international efforts to resolve the years-long feud in the North African country.

Speaking in Cairo, Sisi and Michel agreed on the necessity of continuing efforts to reach a "comprehensive political settlement" to the Libyan crisis, Egyptian presidential spokesman Bassam Radi said.

"This solution should preserve the national institutions in Libya, safeguard its sovereignty, territorial integrity and halt illegal foreign interference," Radi added in an online statement without elaborating.

The talks came hours after the self-styled Libyan National Army, led by Khalifa Haftar and supported by Egypt, agreed to a ceasefire called for earlier this week by Turkey and Russia.

Michel had earlier discussed Libya with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Istanbul on Saturday.

Turkey and Egypt are on opposite sides of Libya's civil war, which has drawn other powers into it, such as Russia.

Turkey supports Libya's Government of National Accord (GNA) backed by the United Nations. Turkey has dispatched troops to bolster the GNA government based in the capital Tripoli, triggering fears of a wider conflict in Libya.

Haftar's forces have been pursuing a campaign since April to capture Tripoli. In recent weeks, they have intensified their battle for the city.

Libya has been in turmoil since the 2011 overthrow of long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

The oil-rich country has two competing administrations: the Tripoli GNA government and the other based in the eastern city of Tobruk, which is allied with Haftar.    (dpa)

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