Italian PM calls for ceasefire, resumption of political process in war-torn Libya

Source: Xinhua| 2020-01-12 10:31:42|Editor: ZX
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ROME, Jan. 11 (Xinhua) -- Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and head of Libya's Government of National Accord Fayez al-Serraj on Saturday called for a ceasefire and resumption of the political process in war-torn Libya.

The two leaders made the appeal at a joint press conference after their meeting here as the international community -- including the European Union (EU) and the United Nations (UN) -- strives to halt the ongoing conflicts in Libya between the eastern-based army led by General Khalifa Haftar and the forces of the UN-backed government led by Serraj.

Conte said that the EU must play a strong role in bringing all involved parties to the table at an international conference in Berlin, which has been in preparation since 2019 and is spearheaded by UN Special Representative and head of its Support Mission in Libya Ghassan Salame.

The Italian premier added he will travel to Turkey on Monday and to Egypt on Tuesday "to continue weaving this fabric, which must lead us to a peaceful solution" in Libya.

For his part, Serraj called for the general to withdraw his troops before a ceasefire, welcomed the call by Russia and Turkey for a ceasefire, and expressed thanks to Germany for its efforts toward a diplomatic solution to the conflict.

Serraj made the remarks shortly after German Chancellor Angela Merkel called for a ceasefire and a resumption of the Berlin process during a televised joint press conference in Moscow with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Conte also met Haftar on Wednesday in Rome and "urged (him) to give up the military option," according to the communique released after their meeting.