The United Nations Support Mission in Libya announced on Tuesday that Libya's warring parties, the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA) and the western-based Government of National Accord (GNA), have agreed to resume ceasefire talks under the Libyan Joint Military Commission's 5+5 format
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 02nd June, 2020) The United Nations Support Mission in Libya announced on Tuesday that Libya's warring parties, the eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA) and the western-based Government of National Accord (GNA), have agreed to resume ceasefire talks under the Libyan Joint Military Commission's 5+5 format.
"The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) welcomes the acceptance by the Government of National Accord and the 'Libyan National Army' of the resumption of talks on the ceasefire and associated security arrangements based on the draft agreement submitted by UNSMIL to the parties during the Joint Military Commission talks (5 + 5) (JMC) on 23 February 2020," UNSMIL said in an official statement.
UNSMIL expressed hope that Libya's rival sides would reach a humanitarian truce, which then would allow the country's relevant authorities to focus on the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and also thanked "member states and regional organizations that worked for a successful return to military negotiations."
"The Mission looks forward to starting the new round of the JMC negotiations via videoconference, in light of current circumstances," UNSMIL added.
After the ouster and assassination of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, the country was plunged into a brutal civil war. Today, Libya is divided between two centers of power � an elected parliament in the country's east, supported by the LNA and the UN-backed GNA in the west, headed by Fayez Sarraj.
In early February, the 5+5 JMC, comprised of five senior military officers from each side, started negotiations under UN auspices in Geneva. The second round of the JMC negotiations ended on February 23. As a result, the warring parties agreed to a draft a ceasefire deal that should pave the way for a lasting ceasefire in Libya and allow the safe return of civilians to their homes under the auspices of UNSMIL.
The talks were moderated by UNSMIL head and then-UN Special Representative to Libya Ghassan Salame, who resigned in early March. Following this event, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appointed Stephanie Turco Williams as Acting Special Representative to Libya and head of UNSMIL on March 11.