Libya’s interim leader meets with Egypt’s Sissi - report

Interim Libyan Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Mohammed Dbeibah met Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi in Cairo on Thursday as part of ongoing efforts to garner international support for his new administration.

Dbeibah was elected by Libyan representatives at U.N.-led peace talks last month and will head the war-torn country until national elections scheduled for December.

The new Libyan premier thanked Sissi for his “honest and effective efforts” to end the conflict in Libya, according to the Associated Press.

Egypt has been a key backer of the opposition Libyan National Army (LNA) led by General Khalifa Haftar, who launched a renewed offensive against the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) in 2019.

However, analysts say Dbeibah, a businessman from Misrata, is closely aligned with Turkey, whose military support for the GNA proved crucial to halting the LNA’s advances.

In June, Sisi threatened to intervene directly against the GNA, raising the prospect of a military confrontation with Ankara.

But Libya’s new government was ready to achieve a “comprehensive partnership” with Egypt, AP cited Dbeibah as saying.

Ankara has also indicated a willingness to repair relations with Cairo, which have been strained over a range of regional issues, including differing attitudes towards the Muslim Brotherhood, and competition over natural gas reserves in the eastern Mediterranean.