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Libya to host fresh UN-sponsored peace talks on Tuesday

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Libyan parties hold talks at the UN Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, on January 26, 2015.

Libya’s warring sides will begin a fresh round of UN-sponsored talks in the country for the first time after the failure of previous negotiations more than three weeks ago in Geneva.

Libyan lawmaker, Mohammed Shueiab, said on Sunday the peace talks would be held on Tuesday in a yet-unspecified location in the African country.

"The dialogue between the participating parties will be indirect through UN envoy on Libya Bernardino Leon," Shueiab was quoted by the independent Libyan Press Solidarity Agency as saying.

The agency also quoted an unidentified source as saying that the venue of the negotiations would be announced hours before their opening due to security concerns.

It is expected that Libya’s main rival factions would participate in the Tuesday talks unlike the Geneva meeting.

Libya plunged into chaos following the 2011 uprising against the dictatorship of long-time ruler, Muammar Gaddafi. The ouster of Gaddafi gave rise to a patchwork of heavily-armed militias and deep political divisions.

The country has been witnessing numerous clashes between government forces and rival militia groups that refuse to lay down arms.

The Tripoli-based General National Congress (GNC), backed by the Fajr (Dawn) Libya militias, took over the capital in the summer of 2014 and established its own government and parliament.

Last month, the GNC refrained from attending the first round of talks with Libya’s internationally-recognized government under Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni in Geneva on January 14. They were also absent for the second round of talks on January 27.

Rival political factions are fighting for power and oil in Libya, which is devastated by a NATO campaign that led to Gaddafi’s fall.


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