Al-Mangoush: Foreign Forces and Mercenaries Must Leave – Al Marsad

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the interim Government of National Unity (GNU), Najla al-Mangoush called on countries that have not yet reopened their embassies and consulates to expedite the provision of services to Libyans and foreigners. 

(Libya, 5 April 2021) – The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the interim Government of National Unity (GNU), Najla al-Mangoush‘s statement came during a press conference on Sunday at the headquarters of the GNU in Tripoli with Charles Michel, the President of the European Council, in which she stressed that the role of the government was to achieve stability and create conditions for the holding of elections as scheduled.

She added that the GNU has provided all support to the High National Election Commission (HNEC), and they need to join together with the efforts of the European Union to support HNEC in technical, logistical and awareness aspects.

Al-Mangoush also explained the GNU’s latest clear and serious strategy towards the immediate departure of foreign mercenaries from Libyan territory. Her comments on the issue were very different from those made a few days ago by the Muslim Brotherhood member and head of the High Council of State, Khaled al-Mishri, who said in a meeting with French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian in Niger that mercenaries and any forces that are present “illegally” should be moved first, and only thereafter the forces that came at the invitation of the “legitimate authorities” based on clear agreements. Le Drian, however, insisted on the necessity for all forces to leave simultaneously.

During the press conference with the EU Ambassador, Najla al-Mangoush stressed the existence of many common issues that bring together Libya and the European Union and which require continuous cooperation. She said, for example, tackling irregular migration, which is not only a Libyan but a regional problem, requires joint action. She pointed out that the Libyan side had developed an immigration management strategy. “Libya has strengthened its cooperation both with the European Union collectively and with European countries on an individual basis in this context,” said al-Mangoush in the conclusion of her statement.

For his part, Michel revealed that the EU ambassador started his work in Tripoli within weeks, and indicated that his visit to Libya comes within the framework of affirming Libyans that the EU is working with the GNU, and that support for this country will be shown clearly through 50k doses of COVID-19 vaccine in the near future.

“We want to support you to build your country, but on the condition that all mercenaries and soldiers must leave the country; we encourage elections to be held on time and we want to support you more,” said Michel. He added that, “stability, security and irregular migration are important subjects.”

Michel pointed out that the future of Libya is in the hands of Libyans, and they have the ability to build a promising country. He talked about his conversation with the Prime Minister of the GNU, Abdul Hamid Dbaiba, regarding the EU’s support in all fields.