By Libya Herald staff.
Tunis, 17 August 2015:
The governments of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the US and US, have issued a joint . . .[restrict]statements strongly condemning “the ongoing barbaric acts by ISIL-affiliated terrorists” in Sirte.
“We are deeply concerned about reports that these fighters have shelled densely populated parts of the city and committed indiscriminate acts of violence to terrorise the Libyan population,” the statement read.
The six countries called on “all parties in Libya aspiring to a peaceful and unified nation to join efforts to combat the threat posed by transnational terrorist groups exploiting Libya for their own agenda”.
They said that the events in Sirte accentuated the urgent need to reach agreement in the UN-brokered Dialogue process and produce a government of national unity. This, they said, would be able to partner with the international community to provide security against extremists intent on destabilising Libya.
“We reiterate that there is no military solution to the political conflict in Libya and remain concerned that the economic and humanitarian situation is worsening every day. We stand ready to support the implementation of a political agreement to ensure that a Government of National Accord and its national institutions can function effectively and meet the urgent needs of the Libyan people,” the statement added.
The Italian government had yesterday separately condemned the IS slaughter in Sirte, but the absence until now of any comment, let alone a denunciation, from the West – particularly the US, UK and France – has bitterly upset and antagonized Libyans. Over the weekend, ordinary Libyans and political figures alike they have increasingly been expressing resentment at what they see is a western abandonment of them.
It is unclear whether the belated joint statement will change that view. [/restrict]