By Libya Herald reporters.
Tunis, 10 October 2015:
There has been a widespread international welcome for UNSMIL’s announcement of the six names for . . .[restrict]the Presidential Council. US Secretary of State John Kerry said that it marked the “completion of the Libyan political framework”.
He continued: “ the announcement of the names of the senior leaders for a Government of National Accord is a significant milestone in the Libyan political process. I welcome these important steps and commend the courageous Libyan delegates who have spent the past year in difficult negotiations to create an inclusive new government”.
He pressed all sides to now move forward on an agreement that would provide the Libyan people with safety, security and the rule of law that they deserved.
“ I urge members of the House of Representatives and the General National Congress to immediately endorse the final text and the slate of leaders for the Government of National Accord”. That done, he said, the United States stood ready to support the new government.
The EU High Representative for foreign affairs, Federica Mogherini, said that the Europeans were also ready to offer immediate political and financial support, the latter to the tune of €100 million.
“The Libyan delegates have displayed a sense of responsibility, leadership and a spirit of consensus at a critical time in the history of their country” she said, “I commend their work and that of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Representative Bernardino Leon”.
She added that, given the challenges facing Libya, there was no time to waste in the formation of the new government, so that it could, with the full recognition and support of the international community, begin working for the benefit of all the Libyan people.
The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon begged Libyan leaders, after months of turmoil and uncertainty not to “squander this opportunity to put the country back on the path to building a state that reflects the spirit and ambitions of the 2011 revolution”.
Now was the time, he added, for the parties to the political dialogue to endorse the proposal and sign the agreement without delay.
There has also been a joint statement from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK and the US. Besides echoing the general encouragement to conclude the agreement, it said that the new government would serve as “the legitimate entity in Libya to ensure the protection of civilians and to confront the growing threat of terrorist groups before they become more entrenched.”
The statement continued that no arms should enter Libya except at the request of the Government of National Accord in accordance with the terms of the political agreement and relevant UN Security Council resolutions.
Meanwhile UNSML chief Bernardino has today sought to clarify a wave of criticism which has focused on the 19 names of potential ministers and officials in the new government structure . By way of clarification, Leon said that only the six nominees for presidential council, made up of the prime minister, three deputies and two other senior ministers were to be voted on by the House of Representatives and the GNC. The remaining names were suggestions about which it would it be up to the presidential council to decide, once it had itself been accepted.
Leon also explained that the addition of a third deputy prime minister came about because UNSMIL responded to reaction that the south ought to play a role in new leadership. [/restrict]