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Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

UNSMIL: "Serious Crisis" in Libya Arise due to Presence of 20,000 Mercenaries


Wed 02 Dec 2020 | 10:12 PM
H-Tayea

On Wednesday, head of the UN Support Mission to Libya UNSMIL, Stephanie Williams, warned of the danger of the deployment of thousands of foreign fighters in Libya.

In her speech during the opening session of the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, held in Tunis today, Williams said that there are now 10 military bases nationwide, not in a particular area, adding that they are either fully or partially occupied by foreign forces.

The UNSMIL head added that there are also 20,000 foreign forces and mercenaries in the North African country, noting that this is a shocking violation of Libyan sovereignty.

"You may believe that these foreigners are here as your guests, but they are now occupying your house. This is a blatant violation of the arms embargo," she stated.

[caption id="attachment_181515" align="aligncenter" width="586"]UNSMIL: UNSMIL: "Serious Crisis" As 20,000 Mercenaries Are in Libya[/caption]

Williams pointed out that the foreign fighters are pouring weapons into the country, which does not need more weapons, confirming that they are not in Libya for Libyans' interests; they are in the country for their own interests.

She added, "I have previously warned you about the declining socioeconomic conditions in the country and the fact that we expect in one month time, exactly in January 2021, there will be 1.3 million Libyans, your compatriots, your citizens in need of humanitarian assistance."

The UNSMIL head also warned of the sharp decline in the purchasing power of the Libyan Dinar, as the liquidity crisis has fully returned. "There is a shortage of cash in circulation," she noted.

She also talked about the electricity crisis, saying, "I don’t need to remind you of how terrible the electricity shortages were last summer because of the terrible corruption and the miss-governance all over the country. I am not pointing fingers. This is a crisis in the West and in the East. You have a crisis of corruption. You have a miss-governance crisis and now you have only 13 of 27 power plants that are functioning."

The UN official said that one billion US dollars is needed immediately to be invested in the electrical infrastructure in order to avert a complete collapse of the electrical grid in your country.

"This is very difficult now because of the pisions in the institutions, the epidemic of corruption and this kleptocratic class that is determined to remain in power," Williams continued.

She also warned Libyans of the danger of interference of some foreign actors who are behaving with complete impunity, adding that there are domestic actors who are engaging in widespread corruption, self-dealing and mismanagement of the country.

The UNSMIL head also highlighted on the increasing lack of accountability and human rights problems on a daily basis, stressing that there are crimes of kidnapping, arbitrary detentions, killings by armed groups all over the country.

She added, "I think that the best way to move forward is through this political dialogue. This is a broad and inclusive forum for decision-making and people are counting on you. We went a long way in Tunis. We set the date of elections. We need to hold all those institutions that need to produce the elections accountable, but you also have a governance crisis. The best way to address your governance crisis is to unify your institutions, to unify your Central Bank which needs to have a board meeting to address the exchange rate crisis immediately."