Libya’s rivals start UN-led talks to reach political accord

Libya’s rivals start UN-led talks to reach political accord
The UN selected 75 delegates from Libya to take part in the six-day forum in a Tunis hotel, above, aimed at ending the political chaos that engulfed the North African nation. (AFP)
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Updated 09 November 2020

Libya’s rivals start UN-led talks to reach political accord

Libya’s rivals start UN-led talks to reach political accord
  • The UN selected 75 delegates from Libya to take part in the six-day forum aimed at ending the political chaos
  • Libya is split between a UN-supported government in the capital, Tripoli, and rival authorities based in the east

TUNIS, Tunisia: Libya’s rival factions began much-awaited political peace talks in Tunisia’s capital on Monday brokered by the United Nations, with a goal of drawing a roadmap to presidential and parliamentary elections.
The UN selected 75 delegates from Libya to take part in the six-day forum in a Tunis hotel, aimed at ending the political chaos that engulfed the North African nation after the 2011 overthrow and killing of dictator Muammar Qaddafi.
Tunisian President Kais Said attended the talks’ opening ceremony, calling the forum “historic by all measures.” Said added the UN efforts aim to set “clear measures and specific dates” to reach “a peaceful solution” in Libya’s conflict.
He also called on those who will lead the transitional period to refrain from running in the next presidential or parliamentary elections.
Stephanie Williams, the top UN official in Libya, told journalists Sunday night that preparatory meetings have been positive.
“Libya now has an excellent opportunity which will allow it to get out of the conflict tunnel, if all the interlocutors assume their responsibilities and respect their commitments at the end of this dialogue,” Williams said.
But previous diplomatic initiatives to end the conflict have repeatedly collapsed. These latest talks however came amid heavy international pressure to start talks. Warring sides agreed to a UN-brokered cease-fire agreement last month in Geneva.
Oil-rich Libya is now split between a UN-supported government in the capital, Tripoli, and rival authorities based in the east. Those sides are backed by an array of local militias, as well as regional and foreign powers.
Eastern Libya forces, led by commander Khalifa Haftar, launched an offensive in April 2019 to try and capture Tripoli. His campaign collapsed in June when the Tripoli-allied militias, with heavy Turkish support, gained the upper hand.


Egypt’s security services bust Muslim Brotherhood network in capital

A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
Updated 23 January 2021

Egypt’s security services bust Muslim Brotherhood network in capital

A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
  • National Security Sector monitored an apartment in the Bab Al-Luq area that was being used by a Muslim Brotherhood group
  • The network was led by a Turkish man

CAIRO: Egypt’s security services have announced the capture of a Muslim Brotherhood network in downtown Cairo.

The network was led by a Turkish man and prepared negative reports that contained “false and fabricated information about the political, economic, security and human rights situations in Egypt,” according to security forces. 

The information was aimed at tarnishing the country’s image inside and outside the country, with the reports sent to the group’s handlers in Turkey.

An official statement said the National Security Sector monitored an apartment in the Bab Al-Luq area that was being used by a Muslim Brotherhood group to prepare negative reports with Turkey’s support. The house was being used as a center for their activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company.

The premises were raided and Helmy Moamen Mustafa Bilji, the Turkish financial director of the group, and three other members were arrested. Legal steps are being taken against them.