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Libya’s Haftar takes two-day time out to hash over agreement reached in Moscow with allies

According to the Russian top brass, the LNA commander was positive about the final statement signed by the Government of National Accord envoys
Commander of the Libyan National Army Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar Sergei Savostyanov/TASS
Commander of the Libyan National Army Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar
© Sergei Savostyanov/TASS

MOSCOW, January 14. /TASS/. Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar has taken two days to discuss agreements reached in Moscow with leaders of tribes supporting the Libyan National Army (LNA) before signing the ceasefire document, the Russian Defense Ministry told reporters on Tuesday.

"LNA Commander Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar was positive about the final statement but took two days to hash over the document with leaders of tribes supporting the LNA," the ministry noted. The defense agency recalled that the draft statement had been signed by head of the Government of National Accord (GNA) Fayez al-Sarraj and High Council of State Chairperson Khalid al-Mishri.

The Russian ministry added that the work that started in the Russian capital would be continued "because the amount of accumulated domestic Libyan issues requires thorough work to form balanced decisions mutually acceptable for the parties."

"During the talks, the parties reaffirmed commitment to sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the country," the ministry said, stressing that the parties also expressed determination to fight international terrorism in an uncompromising manner.

The top brass lauded the principled agreement given by the sides to extend a ceasefire indefinitely as the main achievement of the talks because it establishes favorable conditions to convene a conference on Libya in Berlin.

Libya talks

At midnight on January 12, a ceasefire in Libya proposed by the Russian and Turkish Presidents Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan as part of a larger initiative to achieve peace in the country entered into force. The ceasefire’s objective is to stop hostilities between the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar and Fayez al-Sarraj’s Government of National Accord (GNA) sitting in Tripoli. On Monday, representatives of the parties to the conflict arrived in Moscow for talks after which GNA envoys inked the ceasefire agreement.

Haftar took a pause to study the agreement. However, later he left Moscow without putting his signature under the document. In the early hours of January 14, armed clashes re-erupted in the south of Tripoli — the target of a decisive offensive declared by Haftar in December. The LNA issued a statement declaring "readiness and determination to win."