Libyan Parliament Speaker Asks the UNSG Not to Register Turkey-GNA Maritime MOU – Al Marsad

Chancellor Aguila Saleh, the Speaker of the Libyan House of Representatives (HOR), sent a letter on Sunday to António Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations supplemental to a previous letter dated 4 December 2015. The letter says the GNA-Turkey MOU “violates the UN Law of the Sea, and it is between two countries that do not share common borders, and threatens relations of friendship between Libya and its neighbours, Egypt, Greece and Cyprus” and requests that the Secretary-General of the United Nations does not register the MOU.

[Libya, 15 December 2019] – Al Marsad obtained a copy of the letter in which Chancellor Aguila Saleh briefed the UN Secretary-General on some clarifications in connection with the third request in previous correspondence regarding the non-recognition of the maritime boundaries delimitation agreement between Turkey and the Government of National Accord (GNA) and considering it as null and void.

The Speaker of the Libyan House of Representatives (HOR) explained in the document that “based on Article No. (1), Paragraph (4) of the Libyan Political Agreement signed in the year 2015, related to the term of office of the Government of National Accord (GNA), the term of the Government of National Accord shall be one year as of the date of granting it a vote of confidence by the Libyan House of Representatives. Its tenure shall be renewed automatically for one additional year only. Consequently, the GNA mandate has ended long time ago, and thus this government can no longer conclude treaties and hold Libya responsible for international obligations.”

“According to Article No. (8), Paragraph (2) of the Libyan Political Agreement signed in the year 2015, the Presidential Council of the Government of National Accord shall have the term of reference of concluding international agreements and conventions provided that they are endorsed by the Libyan House of Representatives. Therefore, observing this basic rule is a respect for our legislative role, and this is very important in the case of agreements related to the sovereign rights of Libya. This is clearly the case of the Memorandum of Understanding signed on November 27, 2019 between the Government of the Republic of Turkey and the Government of National Accord for the demarcation of the maritime borders in the Mediterranean region from a legislative point of view based on international agreements,” the Speaker of the Libyan House of Representatives (HOR) continued.

Chancellor Saleh confirmed that the aforementioned memorandum of understanding “did not and will not receive a letter of support from the Libyan parliament, as it violates the UN Law of the Sea, and it is between two countries that do not share common borders, and threatens relations of friendship between Libya and its neighbours, Egypt, Greece and Cyprus.”

“Accordingly, the so-called memorandum of understanding is null and void and will not enter into force, given that one of its parties, Libya, has not completed its internal legal procedures required for its entry into force as stipulated in Article No. (1), Paragraph (5) of the Charter of the United Nations, and that any notification issued by the Government of National Accord is considered incorrect and does not result in any legal effect, and constitutes an act that hinders the implementation of the Libyan Political Agreement in accordance with Paragraph (19) of the United Nations Security Council Resolution No. (2015/2259),” the HOR Speaker elucidated.

“In view of the above, the Libyan Parliament is of the opinion that the so-called memorandum of understanding will not be registered at the United Nations under Article No. (102) of the UN Charter, as Article No. (1), Paragraph (2) of the UN resolution does not activate Article No. (102) of the Charter, and does not register the agreement unless it enters into force. This is one of the basic requirements for registering the agreement, as in the status of the above case.” Chancellor Aguila Saleh added.

Concluding his letter to the UN Secretary-General, Chancellor Saleh wrote, “for these reasons, kindly consider that the so-called memorandum of understanding is in breach of the Libyan Political Agreement for the year 2015, which is supported by UN Security Council Resolution No. (2015/2259). The Libyan House of Representatives firmly believes that the United Nations Secretariat should refrain from registering the so-called memorandum of understanding.”

© Al Marsad English (2019)