| 29 February 2024, Thursday |

UN Libya adviser seeks joint committee on constitution

Stephanie Williams, the UN’s Libya envoy, said on Friday that she had invited the parliament and the High State Council to nominate six members each for a joint committee on Libya’s constitutional arrangements.

Libya’s political process collapsed in December after a scheduled election was canceled, with major factions and political bodies advocating competing plans for the future and supporting different regimes.

The parliament in Tobruk, eastern Libya, swore in Fathi Bashagha as prime minister on Thursday, but the incumbent in Tripoli, west Libya, Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah, has refused to relinquish power, triggering a fresh conflict or territorial split.

The parliament passed its own political agenda in January, which included a referendum on an updated constitution this year, followed by elections the following year.

“The solution to Libya’s crisis does not lay in constructing opposing administrations and perennial transitions,” Williams said, urging sides to maintain security and stability and avoid escalation.

The parliament, which was elected in 2014, is recognized globally thanks to a 2015 political deal that recognized the High State Council as a legislative chamber made up of former parliament members.

Despite appearing to agree with the parliament’s constitutional plans and the installation of Bashagha’s administration at first, the High State Council later rejected both.

Rival factions question the legality of all political structures, including the parliament and the High State Council, as well as Bashagha’s government and the UN-backed Dbeibah administration installed a year ago.

  • Reuters