The African Union (AU) has committed to working closely with the United Nations (UN) in finding a solution to the Libyan conflict. AU Peace and Security Commissioner Smail Chergui told journalists at the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa on Monday that AU troops will be going to Tripoli to assist in the UN peacekeeping effort.
The AU is calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities between warring parties, the respect of an arms embargo against Libya, non-interference by external actors and a role in post-conflict reconstruction of the country.
The United Nations has been brokering talks between forces loyal to Libya’s internationally-recognised government in Tripoli and those led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar.
Chergui says the AU can make a meaningful contribution.
“UN has been dealing with this matter since 8 years I think African Union can certainly contribute because this is an African problem and we have certain sensitivity that others may not have, secondly we want to recognise the role of African countries bordering the neighbours of Libya that can have a say but also a contribution I think at the end of the day what we want is to bring to an end immediately this crisis,” says Chergui.
Silencing the Guns
In his inaugural speech as African Union Chairperson, President Cyril Ramaphosa committed to ensuring peace and security on the continent. South Africa will convene an extraordinary summit on Silencing the Guns and to assess the progress made to end conflicts in May this year. Ramaphosa said the conflicts in Libya and South Sudan are of pressing issues.
“We will work with President Denis Sassou Nguesso in his capacity as the Chairperson of the AU High Level Committee on Libya to convene an intra-Libyan conference to promote ceasefire and dialogue. We will continue to work with the parties in South Sudan with a view to implementing the outstanding issues of the revitalised agreement in order to pave the way for the government of national unity.”