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News ID: 37639
Publish Date: 11:48 - 09 April 2019
TEHRAN, Apr 09-UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called for an immediate halt to fighting in Libya, where forces loyal to military strongman General Khalifa Haftar have attempted the takeover of the capital.

UN urges immediate halt to fighting in LibyaTEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -Guterres “urges the immediate halt of all military operations in order to de-escalate the situation and prevent an all-out conflict,” a UN statement said late Monday.

Haftar, a self-styled commander, who enjoys the loyalty of certain armed groups and who is associated with a non-internationally-recognized government in eastern Libya, last Thursday announced an offensive against Tripoli, where the country’s internationally-recognized government is seated. Forces protecting the Tripoli government have been fighting back.

Haftar has previously participated in reconciliation talks.

The UN chief “strongly condemns the military escalation and ongoing fighting in and around Tripoli, including the aerial attack today by a Libyan National Army (LNA) aircraft against Mitiga airport,” read the statement, referring to forces under Haftar’s command.

LNA spokesman Ahmad al-Mesmari said the Monday airstrike against Mitiga airport, east of the capital, had targeted a MiG-23 military plane and a helicopter. According to a security source at the airport, the attack hit a runway, but caused no casualties.

International reactions

The UN’s envoy to Libya, Ghassan Salame, has condemned the air raid as “a serious violation of international humanitarian law, which prohibits attacks against civilian infrastructure.”

The airstrike reportedly has led to the suspension of aerial traffic until further notice.

Other international powers have expressed their opposition to Haftar’s offensive, which could thwart diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the country’s conflict just days ahead of a national reconciliation conference aimed at uniting rival Libyan forces.

On Monday, the European Union’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini made “a very strong appeal to Libyan leaders and in particular to Haftar to stop all military activities... and to return to the negotiation table.”

French President Emmanuel Macron also expressed his “total opposition to the offensive against the capital and the endangering of civilian lives” during a telephone interview with Fayez al-Sarraj, the leader of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord, according to the GNA.

Also on Monday, the Kremlin called on “all sides to reject actions that could provoke bloodshed in battle and the deaths of civilians.”

Guterres “urges the immediate halt of all military operations in order to de-escalate the situation and prevent an all-out conflict,” a UN statement said late Monday.

Haftar, a self-styled commander, who enjoys the loyalty of certain armed groups and who is associated with a non-internationally-recognized government in eastern Libya, last Thursday announced an offensive against Tripoli, where the country’s internationally-recognized government is seated. Forces protecting the Tripoli government have been fighting back.

Haftar has previously participated in reconciliation talks.

The UN chief “strongly condemns the military escalation and ongoing fighting in and around Tripoli, including the aerial attack today by a Libyan National Army (LNA) aircraft against Mitiga airport,” read the statement, referring to forces under Haftar’s command.

LNA spokesman Ahmad al-Mesmari said the Monday airstrike against Mitiga airport, east of the capital, had targeted a MiG-23 military plane and a helicopter. According to a security source at the airport, the attack hit a runway, but caused no casualties.

International reactions

The UN’s envoy to Libya, Ghassan Salame, has condemned the air raid as “a serious violation of international humanitarian law, which prohibits attacks against civilian infrastructure.”

The airstrike reportedly has led to the suspension of aerial traffic until further notice.

Other international powers have expressed their opposition to Haftar’s offensive, which could thwart diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the country’s conflict just days ahead of a national reconciliation conference aimed at uniting rival Libyan forces.

On Monday, the European Union’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini made “a very strong appeal to Libyan leaders and in particular to Haftar to stop all military activities... and to return to the negotiation table.”

French President Emmanuel Macron also expressed his “total opposition to the offensive against the capital and the endangering of civilian lives” during a telephone interview with Fayez al-Sarraj, the leader of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord, according to the GNA.

Also on Monday, the Kremlin called on “all sides to reject actions that could provoke bloodshed in battle and the deaths of civilians.”

Source:presstv

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