Libya welcomes Turkey-Russia cease-fire call

Libya’s parliament in Tripoli on Thursday welcomed a joint call by the Turkish and Russian presidents to cease-fire in the war-ravaged country.

“Any initiative must not affect the right of the National Accord government and its national army to defend the Libyan people and the capital [Tripoli],” the parliament statement said.

It also confirmed that the Libyan crisis should only be solved through political means.

The party that started the war — Khalifa Haftar forces — could not be part of any political solution, added the statement.

On April 4, Haftar, who commands forces based in eastern Libya, launched an offensive to capture the capital Tripoli from the country’s UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA). According to the UN, over a thousand people have been killed since the start of the operation and more than 5,000 injured.

Referring to Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the statement also called on the countries backing “traitor Haftar against the legitimate government to stop giving support for him and review their positions”.

The Turkish and Russian presidents called for a ceasefire in Libya in a joint statement issued following a meeting on Wednesday in the Turkish metropolis Istanbul.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Vladimir Putin reaffirmed their “strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Libya.”

On Jan. 2, Turkey’s parliament passed a motion allowing the government to send troops upon a request by the GNA, which has been besieged by Haftar’s forces.

The warlord Haftar, backed by Egypt and the UAE, has made significant advances in recent weeks.

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