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France to Host Libya Conference on November 12

France to Host Libya Conference on November 12

Tuesday, 21 September, 2021 - 04:30
Libya's Interim Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah (L) and French President Emmanuel Macron give a speech at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on June 1, 2021 GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT AFP/File

French President Emmanuel Macron will host an international conference on Libya on November 12, a month ahead of elections that aim to put an end to a decade of civil war but that look increasingly uncertain.

"In view of the December elections, France will organize, around the President of the Republic, an international conference on Libya on November 12," said French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, during a press conference on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

Le Drian and his German and Italian counterparts, Heiko Maas and Luigi Di Maio, will also co-chair a meeting devoted to Libya on Wednesday in New York, according to AFP.

France is asking for the elections to be held on schedule and for the "departure of foreign forces and mercenaries," said Le Drian.

Libyan Foreign Minister Najla al-Mangoush at the end of August did not rule out postponing the elections.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is also pressing for the legislative and presidential elections to be held as scheduled on December 24.

In December, the UN estimated there were some 20,000 mercenaries and foreign fighters in Libya, including Russians from the private security company Wagner, Chadians, Sudanese and Syrians.

Several hundred Turkish soldiers are present in Libya under a bilateral agreement with the previous government in Tripoli.

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