Mon, 10 Aug 2020 - 11:49 GMT
Libya’s FM Abdul-Hadi al-Hawaij speaks during a ceremony in Egypt to celebrate the 80th anniversary for the formation of the Libyan army – Photo handed by Youm7 to Et
CAIRO – 10 August 2020: The Cairo Declaration that called for ceasefire in Libya and removing militias from the war-torn country is an important framework to resolve the Libyan crisis, Libya’s Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Minister Abdul-Hadi al-Hawaij said, adding that maritime border demarcation agreements are on the agenda.
Attending a ceremony in Egypt to celebrate the 80th anniversary for the formation of the Libyan army, al-Hawaij considered the Cairo Declaration an Egyptian initiative that takes into consideration the Libyan vision and a proof of the firm relations between both countries.
He added that Libya is planning to sign maritime border demarcation agreements with neighboring, in order to help resolve the Libyan crisis, in accordance with article 74 of the 1982 United Nation Convention on the Law of the Sea.
Libya is suffering a severe division between two factions; the Libyan Parliament and the Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar in the east and the GNA led by Fayez Al-Sarraj. The latter is internationally recognized but is not accepted by the Parliament.
Hundreds were killed in continuous battles between the LNA and the forces of the GNA, over the past year.
Al-Hawaij, during his speech, said Haftar is the actual general commander of the Armed Forces as he assumed the post after the approval of the Parliament, which is the only legitimate authority in the country.
In July, the Egyptian House of Representatives has authorized President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to “take necessary measures” to protect national security, giving a green light for the president to send troops to Libya.
This came in a closed session on protecting the Egyptian and Libyan national security against terror threats. The session was attended only by the Parliament members and the general secretariat of the House.
A week earlier, Sisi said at a meeting with Libyan tribal chiefs in Egypt that any Egyptian military intervention in Libya may only materialize upon a request by the Libyan people and a permission from the Egyptian House.
According to Article 152 of the Egyptian constitution, the state has to seek the Parliament’s approval before declaring war or sending its forces in combat missions.
The members attending the session are not authorized to disclose any details of the discussion inside this secret meeting.
During his meeting with the tribal chiefs on July 16, Sisi 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,” he 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.
Sisi promised that Egypt will intervene "only at the Libyans' request and withdraw upon their order.”