Macron invites Libya’s Sarraj to visit Paris - report
French President Emmanuel Macron invited Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj of Libya’s U.N.-recognised Government of National Accord to visit Paris, the Libya Review reported on Monday.
Turkey accuses France of politically supporting rebel General Khalifa Haftar, leader of the self-styled Libyan National Army, having previously given him military assistance to fight Islamist militants. Turkey itself backs the Tripoli-based GNA, whose forces have reversed the gains made by the LNA during its 14-month offensive to take the capital.
Macron’s invitation was delivered through the French ambassador to Libya, Beatrice Le Fraper du Hellen, who, in a phone call with Sarraj, conveyed her country’s support for the peace initiative put forward by the GNA, the Libya Review said.
On Friday, the United Nations-recognised GNA called for an immediate ceasefire in Libya, saying it had instructed its military forces to halt combat operations. It also called for parliamentary and presidential elections to be held in March and for an end to an oil blockade imposed earlier this year by the LNA.
Two days later, an LNA spokesman said Haftar dismissed the ceasefire as “deceptive”, saying that GNA-allied militias were preparing an assault on the strategic coastal city of Sirte.
Sarraj accepted France’s invitation, stressing that his ceasefire proposal, including progress towards elections and the resumption of oil production and export, must be implemented with the help of all supporters, the Libya Review said.