Thu, 16 Jul 2020 - 04:22 GMT
Meeting with Libyan tribal leaders, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi on Thursday commented on possible Egyptian intervention in Libya – Press photo
- Sisi: The Egyptian Army needs the Parliament’s approval to intervene in Libya
- Sisi: One of the parties to the Libyan conflict fell under control of a foreign power
- Sisi: The Egyptian Army, in the event of intervening, will be led by Libyans carrying the Libyan flag
CAIRO – 16 July 2020: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi on Thursday commented on possible Egyptian intervention in Libya, promising that Egypt will intervene "only at the Libyans' request and withdraw upon their order.”
Meeting with Libyan tribal leaders who have arrived in Egypt on Wednesday night to voice rejection of the Turkish assault in Libya, Sisi said Egypt is willing to receive and train youth from tribes to help build a Libyan national army.
Sisi affirmed that Egypt supports the unified Libyan state, excluding armed and extremist militias. He added that the Sirte-Jufra red line shall not be crossed, describing it as a call for peace by Egypt to activate the political solution in the country.
He affirmed that Egypt hopes Libyan tribes will help resolve the crisis.
قال الرئيس #السيسي خلال لقائه مشايخ وأعيان #القبائل_الليبية اليوم الخميس, 16 يوليو 2020 أن مصر لن تدخل ليبيا الا بطلب منهم ولن تخرج الا بأمر منهم أيضا اشترك ...
Condemning the presence of militias in the war-torn country, Sisi stressed Egypt’s rejection to allow outlawed elements to take Libya as a resort and called on tribal members to get involved in a unified national army and allow only state institutions to possess weapons.
The president affirmed that Egypt rejects foreign interference in the Libyan affairs and seeks political, social, military stability in the western neighbor.
“Egypt’s defense of Libya and vice versa is a commitment that comes as a result of national solidarity between the two countries,” Sisi said, adding that the heroic actions by the Libyan people, on top of which those of leader Omar Al-Mukhtar, and their struggle over the ages to achieve independence prove their rejection of foreign interference.
The president affirmed Egypt is ready to provide all forms of assistance to the Libyan people who seriously seek to end the crisis, warning that it “will not allow Libya to become a new hotbed for terrorism or outlawed [elements], even if it means that Egypt has to intervene directly in Libya.”
Concerning intervention in Libya, the President said Egypt has always stood by a peaceful solution in Libya through encouraging negotiations between Libyan factions. However, it will not stand idly as it watches activities that threaten Egypt’s national security.
“Egypt has the strongest Army in the region and Africa,” Sisi said, adding that it is, however, wise and does not assail or invade other territories.
He noted that in case the Egyptian forces entered Libya, they will be led by tribal leaders carrying the Libyan flag. He added that the army intervention in Libya has to be approved by the Egyptian House of Representatives.
Obviously referring to the Government of National Accord, Sisi said that one of the parties to the Libyan conflict has become under the control of a foreign power that uses this faction for certain purposes in the region, regardless of the Libyan national interest.
قال الرئيس #السيسي خلال لقائه مشايخ وأعيان #القبائل_الليبية اليوم الخميس, 16 يوليو 2020 أن مصر دولة داعية للسلام ولا تقبل بتقسيم ليبيا وتسعى لوقف الاقتتال في...
He added that mercenaries are still being moved from Syria to Libya in an effort to seize the resources of the Libyan people, especially oil, and threaten the security of neighboring countries.
Sisi: Mercenaries are still being moved from Syria to Libya in an effort to seize the resources of the Libyan people, especially oil, and threaten the security of neighboring countries.#EgyptToday #Egypt #Libya #LNA #Sirte #Breaking | #القبايل_الليبية #السيسي pic.twitter.com/uYlke24hxe— Egypt Today Magazine (@EgyptTodayMag) July 16, 2020
At Libyans’ request
The elected Libyan House of Representatives invited Monday the Egyptian Armed Forces to directly intervene in the country whenever there is a threat to the national security of both states, emphasizing the ongoing Turkish aggression and exquisiteness.
On the following day, the Supreme Council of Sheikhs and Lords of Libya supported the Libyan parliament’s calling for an Egyptian military intervention in Libya to end the Turkish unlawful existence.
The council’s spokesperson Sheikh Al Senousi said in press statements that any Egyptian intervention to protect the national security of both Libya and Egypt is totally justified.
Al Senousi added that all the Arab countries should participate in such intervention as Libya is considered to be an Arab cause, an Arab country that is being occupied by foreigners.
Al Senousi said that the council will send a delegation to meet the Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al Sisi in order to discuss the possibility of a military intervention in the face of the Turkish unlawful existence.
Later, the Libyan National Army (LNA) stressed in a statement that Egypt has the right to intervene militarily in the Libyan territories, as the country is a real security partner to Libya.
For his part, Khaled al- Mahjoub, director of the Moral Guidance Department of the Libyan National Army, said that Turkish drones had bombed irrigation pipes near Sirte.
"I do not think that the Turkish military can move, because the land is open and requires sufficient air cover ... We are ready for any attack by the Turks and mercenaries," he said.
In June, Sisi checked on the forces in the Western Military Zone, telling them, "the Egyptian Army is one of the strongest in the region. Yet, it is a wise army that protects but doesn't threaten, and is able to defend the national security of Egypt within and beyond its borders."
The president said that the Air Force, the Special Forces, and the Border Guards have been securing 1,200 kilometers of borders with Libya for seven years, and accomplishing missions that have not been disclosed.
"I'm so happy to meet you today. I got assured about the high status of your combat and technical competence. I see the Air Force and Special Forces are ready to accomplish missions," the president told forces.
الرئيس السيسي: الخطوط الحمراء التي تم إعلانها في سيدي براني هي بالأساس دعوة للسلام وإنهاء الصراع في ليبيا اشترك الآن: https://goo.gl/NQkcZ5 فيسبوك: https://w...
"Be ready to accomplish any mission whether here within our borders or - if needed – beyond our borders," president Sisi addressed the Air Force elements in the Western Military Zone.
Presidency Spokesperson Bassam Radi announced the news saying that Minister of Defense and Military Production Mohamed Zaki, Chief of Staff Mohamed Farid, and branch commanders were present.
The president warned in his speech in Sidi Barani district in Matrouh Governorate bordering Libya against the foreign intervention in Libya for it composes a threat to regional, European, and global security and stability.
The president asserted the withdrawal of mercenaries from Libya, and the necessity that militias give up their arms to the Libyan National Army (LNA).
"Any direct intervention by Egypt in Libya has become legitimate in line with UNSC resolutions, and upon the call of the legitimate authority in Libya," President Sisi said.
The president underlined the outcomes of Germany Conference held in January stating that all foreign powers shall refrain from supplying arms to Libyan armed groups.
"If Egypt had illegitimate goals in Libya, we would have intervened years ago. We would not accept that history documents that we intervened in time of Libya's weakness…Jufrah and Sirte are a red line…The current line must be maintained. The party who would not respect it, would attain neither the west nor the east. The political process must go forward," the president tells a representative of Libyan tribes.
Additional reporting by Egypt Today Staff, Noha Al-Tawil