Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan meets with Libya's internationally recognised Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj in Istanbul, Turkey, November 27, 2019. Presidential Press Office, Reuters Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan meets with Libya's internationally recognised Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj in Istanbul, Turkey, November 27, 2019. Presidential Press Office, Reuters

Libyan Parliament votes to demand withdrawal of GNA's int'l recognition

Sat, Jan. 4, 2020
CAIRO - 4 January 2020: Libyan Parliament's spokesperson Abdullah Belhiq stated that the parliament has voted unanimously to demand the international community to withdraw its recognition of the Government of National Accord (GNA) in an emergency session held Saturday.

Belhiq added that the Libyan parliament also unanimously voted to cut relations with Turkey.

The Libyan Parliament voted Saturday to reject a memorandum of understanding (MoU) recently inked between Chairman of the Libyan Presidential Council (PC) Fayez al Sarraj and Turkish government, which allows the latter to send troops to Libya.

During Saturday’s emergency session, the parliament further voted to refer all the signatories of both agreements signed by Turkish President Erdogan and Sarraj on security as well as maritime jurisdictions, to the Libyan top prosecutor on charges of high treason.

The voting session came after the head of the Libyan National Army Khalifa Haftar made a televised speech, and called on all Libyans to take up arms in response to a prospective military intervention from Turkey.

Last week, Turkey’s Parliament voted for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s proposal to send Turkish troops to Libya, in what was seen as an escalation that would deepen the Libyan crisis and mount tensions in the Middle East and North Africa.

A number of parliamentarians further demanded the withdrawal of Libyan citizenship from the signatories of the two agreements and called upon the international community to reject the MoUs.

Egypt Today sat with the Speaker of the Libyan Parliament Aguila Saleh in December, where he thoroughly spoke about the legal status of the MoUs in light of the GNA's authorization.

Call to withdraw confidence of Sarraj gov't

"The government of Fayez al-Sarraj, prime minister of the so-called Government of National Accord, does not have any legal authorization to sign international agreements," said Aguila Saleh, ensuring that the parliament did not approve them.

The Libyan parliament has addressed the United Nations and the Arab League and called for withdrawing confidence from the government of Sarraj as it did not take the constitutional oath before the Parliament and it was never granted the Parliament’s confidence, Saleh said.

"Any agreement signed by any country must be ratified by the legislative authority in order to enter into force," he said.

Saleh affirmed that Sarraj has ended his term, according to the Skhirat agreement which gave Sarraj the authority for only two years.

The Skhirat agreement was signed in 2015 between parties of conflict in Libya, under the supervision of the United Nations, and the Security Council resolutions which imposes a ban on the supply of weapons and military equipment to and from Libya.

The Libyan parliament twice rejected renewing Sarraj’s term, therefore, any international agreement is invalid, including that agreements between Sarraj and Turkey.

"The Libyan political agreement, Skhirat, stipulates that the government must be granted confidence from the House of Representatives and take the constitutional oath before (it),” Saleh said.

He said he will discuss the issue of withdrawing international recognition of Sarraj’s government during the meeting of the Arab Parliament scheduled for January 15th. He added that there will be subsequent similar calls for all European states and the United States.

Egypt calls for global action to shouldering responsibilities

Once signed late in November, the two agreements between Turkey and Sarraj on maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean Sea that could worsen Ankara's disputes over energy exploration with other countries, were denounced by Egypt, Cyprus, and Greece as illegitimate and “has no legal effect.”

Egypt urged the international community to shoulder its responsibility towards these negative developments.

The Egyptian House of Representatives (Parliament) on Thursday warned against the consequences of Turkey’s planned military intervention in Libya, due to the threat it poses to Egyptian national security and the stability of the Mediterranean region.

The Egyptian House stressed that Egypt will not stand idle while watching such irrational and irresponsible behavior, and will defend its national security and the interests of its neighbors, and will take all necessary measures necessary to confront these unacceptable threats and behaviors, the parliament said in a press release published by state’s news agency MENA.

For his part, Libyan Parliament Aguila Saleh expressed appreciation to the stance of the Egyptian Parliament, which has utterly rejected the latest agreements and called it “reckless,” referring to his meeting with Parliament Speaker Ali Abdel Aal.

“We appreciate your support to the Libyan people in the face of terrorism, conspiracies, and domination attempts by terrorist organizations, armed militias, and greedy countries backing these malign projects,” Saleh stated.

He also affirmed his great trust in Egypt’s leadership and people, and urged Egypt to use its pivotal regional role and influence to address the international community and highlight the futility of the recognition of the National Accord Government and the Presidential Council, which Sarraj chairs.

Saleh said that he and Abdel Aal has discussed the developments regarding the latest controversial agreements, and that the two sides agreed that this agreement is illegal at the local and international levels.

In a statement by Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign affairs it was stated that Skhirat Agreement set the powers of the Government of National Accord. The eighth article of the agreement prohibited the Libyan prime minister from solely clinching international deals without consent of all the cabinet members.

As the current Government of National Accord lacks full representation of all the Libyan regions, the current government is a caretaker cabinet with limited powers, the Egyptian ministry said in its statement.

Such deals are not binding or affecting the interests and the rights of any third parties, it said, adding that the deals will have no influence on maritime border mechanism in east Mediterranean area.
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