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Libya parliament to mediate between feuding Ubari tribes

Libyan Parliament Speaker Aguilah Saleh said an ongoing visit by a number of lawmakers to the southwestern town of Ubari was aimed at ending weeks of deadly fighting between two feuding tribes, stressing that parliament would not stand idly by as tribal conflicts continued.

The visit aims to “bridge the gap between the warring Tuareg and Al-Tabu tribes and listen to their demands, which pertain to their living and economic conditions,” Saleh, currently in Ubari, said in an interview with Anadolu Agency.

“Parliament has not tasked any force with resolving the [tribal] conflict taking place in the south. There is a sizable military force in the south, which, I believe, is capable of securing the area,” Saleh said.

He added that parliament, based in the eastern city of Tobruk, planned to issue several decrees, including a transitional justice law that was aimed at “giving people back their rights.”

Parliament will also “amend several unjust laws passed during the tenure of ex-leader Muammar Gaddafi, which had stripped the people of their property,” Saleh asserted.

In terms of the political isolation law aimed at purging Gaddafi-era officials, parliament, he said, would discuss it in coming weeks and consider amending it.

Regarding ongoing military operations in the eastern city of Benghazi against militias, Saleh denied the involvement of Egyptian or other foreign warplanes, affirming that “only Libyan warplanes and pilots are carrying out the airstrikes.”

“This isn’t a war against Libyans, but against groups of outlaws that seek to destroy Libya,” he said.

“We have yet to devise a clear plan to liberate Tripoli, but we will study the situation once we’re done with Benghazi and we expect the matter to be resolved without war,” Saleh added.

Regarding recent comments by French officials in which they said southern Libya was becoming a hotbed for militants, Saleh stressed that parliament rejected any French interference.

“When we sought international intervention, we didn’t ask for strikes against Libyans, but for the protection of civilians and support for the Libyan army,” he said, referring to a previous request by parliament for international support.

Libya has been dogged by political instability since Gaddafi’s 2011 ouster and death.

In the three years since, rival militias have frequently clashed in Libya’s main cities, including Tripoli and Benghazi. The central government, meanwhile, has remained largely absent from the scene.

The sharp political divisions have yielded two rival seats of government in the country, each of which has its own institutions.

Two assemblies currently vie for legislative authority: a newly-elected House of Representatives, which convenes in the eastern city of Tobruk; and a General National Congress, which – though its mandate expired in August – continues to convene in Tripoli.

The two parliaments support two different governments respectively headquartered in the two cities.

World Bulletin

This article was originally published here.

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