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UN resolution on Libya contains ill-balanced provisions — Russian Foreign Ministry

The Russian Foreign Ministry stressed that Moscow cautioned its counterparts in the UN Security Council against rushing to pass the resolution on Libya
The Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow Mikhail Japaridze/TASS
The Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow
© Mikhail Japaridze/TASS

MOSCOW, February 13. /TASS/. The UN Security Council resolution in support of the outcome of the Berlin conference on Libya drafted by Britain and approved on February 12 contains some ill-balanced provisions, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

The ministry stressed that Russia cautioned its counterparts in the UN Security Council against rushing to pass the resolution and urged them to secure the Libyan parties’ agreement with the results of the Berlin conference. "Other members of the Council who were not invited to Berlin pointed to the fundamental importance of that step. The Libyans have just started the dialogue, including within the '5+5' Joint Military Commission. Its work is expected to result in outlining effective parameters of a ceasefire referred to in the Berlin communique, which could be enshrined in the UN Security Council resolution," the foreign ministry said.

"However, the British authors decided to pass the Security Council resolution as soon as possible, apparently without thinking about its viability. Our constructive proposals were rejected. As a result, the resolution, which was approved, contains many ill-balanced provisions and also provides for the possibility of imposing sanctions for failure to comply with something which does not exist yet, and demands that the [UN] secretary general submit his recommendations on that score. This, in particular, concerns the ceasefire, which has not been agreed on yet," the ministry said.

According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, Russia’s representatives had stressed that the fundamental principle of the Libyan settlement process enshrined in the previous Security Council resolutions on Libya, according to which only Libyans themselves can determine the future of their country, should apply to all recommendations to the Libyan parties, including from the UN Security Council.

"We doubt that such ultimatums and unilateral approaches will contribute to making progress in the Libyan settlement. The persistent promotion of plans developed without taking into account the opinions of Libyans, gives rise to doubts," the Russian Foreign Ministry added.

Libyan crisis

There are two parallel bodies of executive power in Libya - the internationally recognized Government of National Accord under Fayez al-Sarraj and the Provisional Cabinet led by Abdullah Al-Thani in the country’s east. The latter is supported by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA). On December 12, Haftar said that his forces were beginning a decisive battle for the capital. For its part, the Government of National Accord mobilized all armed groups under its control to defend it, asking for Turkey’s assistance on the basis of a memorandum on military cooperation signed in late November.

Berlin hosted a high-level international conference on Libyan settlement on January 19, with at least ten heads of state and government, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, taking part. In their final document, participants in the Berlin meeting called for a ceasefire in Libya, reaffirmed their commitment to refrain from interfering into Libya’s affairs, suggested a unified government be formed and reforms be launched to restore Libya’s state system destroyed by NATO’s intervention of nine years ago.