Ceasefire not respected in Libya: UN envoy
Updated: 2014-10-29 10:15
TRIPOLI - UN's envoy to Libya said on Tuesday that a ceasefire agreement reached last month has not been respected by the country's rivaling militias, and warned the international community of the dangerous situation facing the war- torn North African nation.
Bernardino Leon, head of the UN Support Mission in Libya, made the remarks at a press conference held on Tuesday afternoon in the capital Tripoli.
The envoy called on Libya's Grand Mufti Sadiq Ghariani, the country's highest spiritual leader, to support the national dialogue between the rival parties as he commented on the incessant clashes in Benghazi and Tripoli.
"The United Nations will continue to work towards a ceasefire. Dialogue is the only way out of crisis," Leon said.
"I think this country is running out of time. The danger for the country is that in the past weeks we are getting very close to the point of no return. This is something the Libyans have to sort out, it is up to the Libyan actors, it is their decisions," he added, giving a foreboding warning that echoed his previous cautionary statements that said the country could enter a new civil war.
The UN official met with members of the Libyan parliament, who had boycotted previous sessions, and discussed with them the current situation in the western region, stressing that the international community needs to pay attention to the situation in Benghazi and western Nafusa mountain.
The UN mission in Libya brokered a national dialogue conference on Sept 29 in the southwestern city of Ghadames between Libya's rival factions. The purpose of the gathering was to find a peaceful solution to the country's political crises after months of fierce fighting and political division.
At the conference, the warring parties reached a truce deal, and agreed to start a political dialogue, but violence has continued throughout the country.