The African Union (AU) has proposed a global conference in July to try to resolve the Libya conflict with the aim of holding elections in October. A statement on Tuesday said the 55-member body would like to hold “an international conference on reconciliation in Libya under the auspices of the AU and UN” during the first half of July. In addition, there are dozens of armed groups vying for power and state wealth. Suicide bombers have targeted a number of Libya’s vital institutions as armed groups take advantage of the chaotic political situation. In a separate development, forces loyal to General Khalifa Haftar of the self-declared Libya National Army (LNA) assumed full control of El Sharara, Libya’s biggest oil field.
February 12, 2019 09:11 UTC
An armed group from Tuareg tribe affiliated to the eastern forces led by warlord Khalifa Haftar seized Monday evening Sharara oil field after the withdrawal of Presidential Council force led by Ali Kannah from the site. Military sources said the armed group is led by a militant called “Aghlas” who commands “brigade 173”. According to the sources, Kannah’s force retreated peacefully after negotiations with Tuareg elders who urged him to pull out his force from Sharara to spare the blood of Tuareg tribesmen and keep the oil field and the entire region safe from damage. Kannah is also a member of Tuareg tribe, but loyal to Tripoli-based government. His force has reportedly retreated to El Feel oil field.
February 12, 2019 06:11 UTC
Eastern Libyan military forces have full control of Libya’s biggest oilfield, El Sharara, a spokesman said, in a challenge to the internationally recognized government in Tripoli. The Libyan National Army (LNA) based in eastern Libya began an offensive in the south last month to fight militants and secure oilfields. “Peacefully with no resistance LNA has full control over Sharara oilfield with all its facilities,” the LNA spokesman said on Twitter, adding the facility was being secured. Pictures posted online showed jubilant soldiers standing in front of an El Sharara signpost. Hours earlier, the LNA’s chief of staff, Abdel-Razeq Nathouri, told Reuters the soldiers were negotiating access to the field.
February 11, 2019 21:22 UTC
FILE PHOTO: A general view of the El Sharara oilfield, Libya December 3, 2014. REUTERS/Ismail Zitouny/File PhotoBENGHAZI, Libya – 11 February 2019: Eastern Libyan forces have full control of El Sharara oilfield, their spokesperson said on Tuesday. "Peacefully with no resistance LNA (Libyan National Army) has full control over Sharara oilfield with all its facilities," he tweeted, adding that the facility was now being secured.
February 11, 2019 19:30 UTC
OTTAWA — The New Democrats said Monday that federal ethics commissioner Mario Dion is looking into allegations the Prime Minister's Office improperly tried to help SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution. OTTAWA — The New Democrats said Monday that federal ethics commissioner Mario Dion is looking into allegations the Prime Minister's Office improperly tried to help SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution. Word of the probe came shortly after a Liberal MP joined opposition calls for a parliamentary investigation into the matter. Lametti, meanwhile, faced a fresh round of questions about the simmering political controversy after speaking to a Canadian Bar Association meeting Monday. Trudeau, who is in British Columbia today, is also likely to face questions about the nature of those closed-door discussions.
February 11, 2019 19:18 UTC
OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau welcomed Monday an investigation by the federal ethics commissioner into an allegation that his office pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution. OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau welcomed Monday an investigation by the federal ethics commissioner into an allegation that his office pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution. "We welcome the ethics commissioner's investigation," Trudeau said. Notwithstanding the ethics commissioner's probe, Scheer said the House of Commons justice committee also needs to launch an investigation. "But there is a line that cannot be crossed — telling the attorney general what a decision ought to be.
February 11, 2019 19:13 UTC
Footage on social media showed fighters from the self-styled army in eastern Libya - under the command of Khalifa Haftar - mutilating bodies of dead fighters from the Derna Protection Force (DPF.) "We have liberated Derna despite the siege of the international community on our force and the ban of arms. According to Haftar, Derna was announced "liberated" from all "terrorist fighters" last June. In the meantime, media sources close to DPF said five of the force's leaders were killed in clashes at the old city's frontline. Mutilating bodies, exhuming graves, burning bodies and more have been seen before by Haftar's forces in Benghazi's Ganfouda and elsewhere in 2017.
February 11, 2019 18:33 UTC
The Head of the Presidential Council of Libya, (PC) Fayez Al-Sirraj, has discussed with a delegation from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) the latter's assistance to handle the humanitarian crisis caused by war and conflicts in Libya. Al-Sirraj reiterated his ideas dicussed last February with the ICRC's General Director, including the need to expand cooperation to contain sectors like health, social affairs and others. Al-Sirraj also expressed willingness to support the ICRC in all ways in order for it to work properly in Libya. Currently, southern Libya is seeing terrible humanitarian crisis amid a military operation led by Khalifa Haftar's self-styled army. An official in Murzuq, southern Libya, said that the town's hospital is in dire needs for medications and assistance, saying the only help it had received earlier was from the ICRC and World Health Organization.
February 11, 2019 18:00 UTC
The National Front Alliance has renamed itself as a political party after announcing on Sunday the formation of its political office with instructions to its Head to reshuffle the members, according to the Mahmoud Jabril's Facebook Page. Mahmoud Jabril is the Chairman of the National Front Alliance. This is the first time, the alliance says it is a political party since its foundation in 2012 at the time of General National Congress's (GNC) elections. "Such acts compel me to stop doing my duties in the alliance and thus take away many of my convictions for the alliance." He is the second figure to resign from the alliance after Hafid Gadour who quit on November 10, 2018.
February 11, 2019 17:48 UTC
The organisation, which organises search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean, operates three vessels: Sea Watch 1, 2, and 3. If none are able to assist then the vessel would request permission from MRCC in Rome to carry out a rescue itself. On 16 June 2018, the Sea-Watch 3 entered Valletta port for maintenance and scheduled certification inspection, before asking for permission to leave the port on 30 June. The Maltese port authorities did not issue the necessary permission for it to leave, however, initially claiming that “checks” were holding up the permit. The holding of a rescue ship until the end of the crossing season was an “unabashed abuse of power” argued the NGO’s lawyers, asking the court to declare their rights as having been infringed and to award damages.
February 11, 2019 17:47 UTC
ROME — An Italian aid group is reporting that a migrant smuggling ship with an estimated 150 people on board is in distress off Libya. The Mediterranea Saving Humans group, which monitors migrant rescues, said Monday on Twitter that it heard about a distress call from a boat near Al Khoms, Libya. It appealed for Italian or Maltese coast guard ships to go to the area so the migrants aren’t returned to Libya. Italy has sought to boost the Libyan coast guard’s abilities to conduct rescues in its search-and-rescue zone in the Mediterranean Sea so the migrants don’t come to Europe. But aid groups say migrants face horrific conditions once they are returned to Libya, including facing beatings, torture and rape.
February 11, 2019 16:18 UTC
Brookings Institute paper seeks empowered cities solution to Libya problemBy Sami Zaptia. As an essential element of this leadership, the United States should return Americans, and a U.S. Embassy and ambassador, to Libya. An oversight board composed of Libyan technocrats and foreign experts would assess eligibility based on the actual behavior of the local actors. Counterterrorism would remain a top priority for the United States and other countries under the new approach. However, it would be pursued in a more nuanced way, with tighter standards about which local actors to choose as partners.
February 11, 2019 15:22 UTC
There may now be a glimmer of hope, however, as a U.N.-led effort in Libya starts to gain more traction. As an essential element of this leadership, the United States should return Americans, and a U.S. Embassy and ambassador, to Libya. An oversight board composed of Libyan technocrats and foreign experts would assess eligibility based on the actual behavior of the local actors. Counterterrorism would remain a top priority for the United States and other countries under the new approach. However, it would be pursued in a more nuanced way, with tighter standards about which local actors to choose as partners.
February 11, 2019 14:03 UTC
FILE – Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry – ReutersThe minister described the role played by Turkey in some countries especially Libya as "worrisome,""The Egyptian stance is clear; there will be no restoration of the nature of relations except in case there is a tangible change in the Qatari policies so as not to have negative impacts on Egypt and its people," Shoukry stated. "Ambitions, will and joint work" are required to end the African disputes, Shoukry said, adding that Africa is already witnessing positive indications in this regard. "adding that Egypt will not accept this role to extend to other countries in the African continent.Shoukry said that that what is happening in Libya has a direct impact on Egypt. He added that "Securing the Egyptian-Libyan borders cost [Egypt] a lot of effort, resources and martyrs ... We know very well what our interests are and we have the ability to defend them ... At the same time, we do not [reject] other relations as long as they do not directly cause harm and destabilization to us. However, the Arab Quartet seemingly has not seen the Qatari procedures sufficient to end the ban and restore relations.
February 11, 2019 13:07 UTC
The Director of Ras Ajdir crossing point, Brigadier Abdul Salam Al Omrani said the border has witnessed an increase in passenger traffic, clarifying that an estimated 12 thousand people have crossed the border within the past three days. "The border is witnessing an increase in the flow of people and goods in the recent period," Al-Omrani said. Observers say that this is likely due to the start of the half-year holiday in Libya, which coincided with an increase in the price of Libyan airline tickets.
February 11, 2019 12:46 UTC