MOSCOW, April 28. /TASS/. Russia does not approve the statement by Libyan National Army (LNA) Commander Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar regarding the transfer of power in Libya to the LNA, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said, following an informal meeting of the BRICS member states’ foreign ministers Tuesday.
"We did not approve the statement made by Mr. [Prime Minister of the Government of National Accord Fayez] Sarraj, who refused to talk with Field Marshal Haftar, and we do not approve the statement that Field Marshal Haftar will now single-handedly decide how the Libyan people should live," he said.
Lavrov pointed to the statement, made by Aguila Saleh, the president of the Libyan House of Representatives, in which the politician called for national dialogue, aimed at creation of power entities, accepted by everyone, which would equally represent the three key regions of Libya (Tripolitania, Cyrenaica, and Fezzan).
"I think, this is exactly what we were talking about all these years — that the Libyans themselves must find mutually acceptable approaches to building a dialogue, and then to building their state, whereas foreign actors should encourage these exact approaches," Lavrov commented.
The Russian foreign minister also recalled that the position of the UN special envoy for Libya has been vacant for two months already. "I believe that it is absolutely necessary for the UN Secretary-General Mr. [Antonio] Guterres to appoint the new special envoy as soon as possible. By common agreement, this must be a representative of the African region, and there are such candidates, we know them well, they are experienced people who enjoy credibility," he noted.
On Monday, the Libyan National Army announced that it takes control over the country and disavows the Skhirat Agreement. Field Marshal Haftar promised to provide conditions for the establishment of permanent civilian state bodies in accordance with the will of the people. According to Haftar, the Skhirat Agreement has destroyed Libya, put it in danger, and "has become a part of its dark past." In response, the Presidential Council of the Government of National Accord called Haftar’s statement a farce and an attempt of another coup in Libya.
The Agreement, signed in December 2015 in Morocco’s Skhirat, is based on the UN peace plan for Libya. It implies creation of power entities, including the Government of the National Accord and the Presidential Council (which serves as the collective head of state). Both entities are based in Tripoli and are headed by Fayez Sarraj.