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Haftar Accepts ‘Popular Mandate’ to Rule Libya

Haftar Accepts ‘Popular Mandate’ to Rule Libya

Tuesday, 28 April, 2020 - 07:45
Libyan National Army (LNA) commander Khalifa Haftar. (Reuters)

“popular mandate” for him to rule Libya.

In a televised address, he said he was “responding to the will of the people” to annul the Skheirat agreement and manage the country’s affairs for the coming future.

He said the agreement has “destroyed” the country, adding that the people have tasked the LNA general command with a “historic” duty in such extraordinary times.

It is “proud to annul the political agreement, which will now be a thing of the past, through the will of the Libyan people, who are the source of powers,” he added.

The Skheirat deal, signed in 2015, has led Libya on a “dangerous” path, Haftar remarked.

The agreement led to the formation of the presidential council, which is headed by Fayez al-Sarraj, and the High Council of State, headed by Muslim Brotherhood member Khalid al-Mishri.

Sarraj’s Government of National Accord did not comment on Haftar’s announcement, but it will likely reject it.

“We announce that the general command is answering the will of the people, despite the heavy burden and the many obligations and the size of the responsibility, and we will be subject to the people’s wish,” Haftar said.

He also vowed to prepare conditions to restore the state’s civil institutions, in line with the people’s aspirations, while the LNA continues its operation to liberate the country from terrorist and criminal gangs affiliated with the GNA.

The US Embassy in Tripoli said that Washington “regrets... Haftar’s suggestion that changes to Libya’s political structure can be imposed by unilateral declaration.”

“The Embassy nevertheless welcomes any opportunity to engage LNA commander Haftar and all parties in serious dialogue about how the country can move forward.”

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