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Libya peace talks reach final stages: UN envoy

Libya peace talks reach final stages: UN envoy

UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations peace envoy for Libya said on Wednesday he was confident that the past seven months of talks will yield an agreement on ending the violence in the north African country.

“I am increasingly confident that the process is finally drawing to its final stages,” Bernardino Leon told the UN Security Council.

A final round of talks on forming a national unity government is expected to open this week, with the sides haggling over names for key posts in the new administration.

Libya has two rival parliaments and governments, with Tripoli controlled by Libya Dawn forces who seized the capital last year, forcing the internationally recognised government to operate out of Tobruk, in the northeast of the country.

The United Nations has been brokering talks between the groups with the aim of establishing a unified government that could confront the threat from Islamic State group (IS) extremists, who have gained a foothold in several Libyan towns.

Libyan factions agreed during UN-brokered talks in January to set up a unity government to restore the stability that has been shattered since the 2011 fall of Moammar Qadhafi, but negotiations on modalities have run into hurdles.

Published in Dawn, August 27th, 2015

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