Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Libya congress calls for UN-backed ceasefire

07 August 2014, 15:10

Benghazi - Libya's newly elected house of representatives on Wednesday called for an immediate ceasefire under United Nations supervision to end three weeks of clashes among rival armed factions that have killed more than 200 people.

After the worst fighting in Tripoli and Benghazi since the 2011 uprising ousted Muammar Gaddafi, Western governments have mostly closed up their embassies, fearing the North African state is edging toward another civil war.

Lawmakers, meeting in the eastern town of Tobruk far from the clashes in Tripoli and Benghazi, on Wednesday voted to back a proposal for an immediate ceasefire that would be monitored by the United Nations.

Details of the proposal were not immediately available, and it was unclear warring militias would accept the parliament decision after some of their political allies had already dismissed the new 200-member Congress as unconstitutional.

"One hundred and thirty-one members of the parliament have voted to support an immediate ceasefire for all ongoing fighting in the country and to let United Nations supervise the operation", said lawmaker Iissa al-Oraybi.

Libya's western partners, who once backed the 2011 rebellion with Nato air strikes, hope the new assembly can end the political deadlock that triggered heavy clashes in the capital and the eastern city of Benghazi.

Heavy artillery

But the United Nations, the United States and most European countries have already closed up their embassies and evacuated staff. It was unclear whether the United Nations would accept any immediate role in monitoring.

The parliament also voted to hand some executive powers temporarily to the legislature until a new presidential election and a new president is chosen, as lawmakers push to consolidate their transition from a previous parliament.

Elected in June, the House of Representatives replaces the General National Congress (GNC) after a vote which, analysts said, eroded the dominance of Islamist factions linked to the Muslim Brotherhood in the legislature.

Some Islamist-leaning lawmakers and former GNC deputies allied with the Misrata armed brigades involved in Tripoli clashes have rejected the new parliament as unconstitutional.

On Wednesday, there was little of the heavy artillery and rocket fire that for the last three weeks has hit southern and western Tripoli, where Islamist-leaning Misrata brigades are fighting to take control of Tripoli airport from rival militias allied with the town of Zintan.

The battle for the airport is part of a wide struggle between two loose factions of ex-rebels and their political allies who once fought together against Gaddafi, but whose rivalries have erupted over dominations of postwar Libya.

On one side are the Zintan brigades, based in the city some 130km southwest of Tripoli with their anti-Islamist Qaaqaa and al-Sawaiq fighters, including some ex-Gaddafi forces, and political allies who say they are a defending Libya against extremists.

Against them are fighters loyal to the western port of Misrata and other militias who are allied with the Islamist Justice and Construction party, an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, who say they are fighting ex-Gaddafi elements.

- Reuters


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
S Mbinya
Kenyans demand action after femal...

This comes a few days after a female passenger was drugged and then robbed in a matatu plying the Kenyatta – Kencom route. Read more...

Submitted by
S Mbinya
Natural aphrodisiacs to boost lib...

It is advisable to take them before sex in order to achieve maximum benefit. Read more...

Submitted by
Man defiles girlfriend’s daughter

The two-year-old girl sustained serious injuries due to the forceful penetration. Read more...

Submitted by
Bernard Lugagah
How your birth order affects your...

Mismatched birth orders may be the simple reason you and your significant other don’t seem to get along.  Read more...

Submitted by
Jayne Zack
Raila has lost his remaining bull...

He added that Jubilee and Cord are like day and night. Read more...

Submitted by
Gabriel Ngallah
Changamwe OCPD collapses, dies in...

He had complained of some pain in his body around 11am. Read more...