Sierra Leone Statement at the UN – on the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) – JOINT A3 PLUS (ALGERIA, GUYANA, MOZAMBIQUE, SIERRA LEONE)

Madam President,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the A3 Plus members, namely Algeria, Guyana, Mozambique and my own country Sierra Leone.

The A3 Plus thanks Mr. Abdoulaye Bathily, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Libya and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya for his update on the situation in Libya.

We would also wish to thank H.E. Ambassador Kazuyuki Yamazaki, Chair of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1970 (2011) for his briefing on the work of the Committee.

We recognize and welcome the presence of the Permanent Representative of Libya in today`s meeting.

Madam President,

The A3 Plus remains firmly committed to a peaceful, stable, democratic, and prosperous Libya. As this Council holds another briefing on the situation in Libya. In this meeting, we will focus on these issues:

 On the political situation: we note with grave concern that 13 years since the start of the crises, Libya remains in a political stalemate. The country continues to grapple with deepened political impasse and instability, beset by internal divisions. With no new dates set for parliamentary and presidential elections, we believe that this situation will heighten political instability and further undermines the State’s ability to rebuild its institutions. 

Today, Libyans are still hopeful for progress towards  credible and successful elections that will put the country on the path of national reconciliation.

Libyans do not need any more good rhetoric. They need action, and they need it now. This is a process that is taking too long, and, the current fragile political situation, is a recipe for chaos and insecurity.

In this context, the A3 Plus reiterates its call on all stakeholders to support, fully engage with SRSG Bathily’s mediation efforts and, without further delay, to reach a consensus on electoral laws and hold elections that will help to restore political, security and economic stability to the country.

 This should be done in an inclusive manner, with agreement on the way forward to sustainable development, stability, prosperity, peace, prosperity, and a democratic future for all Libyans.

We, therefore, encourage SRSG Bathily to continue engaging Libyan actors for the resumption of political discussions that will deliver progress towards elections. 

We also appeal to all political leaders to participate in good faith and support the UN’s mediation role and to also constructively engage in meetings convened by SRSG Bathily to address unresolved matters for a successful conduct of credible and fair elections.

In essence, the focus is on fostering dialogue, resolving issues, and ensuring a successful electoral process. In this regard, we call on the Secretary-General and the SRSG to leverage their good offices in developing a clear and time-bound plan for an effective political process. This plan should aim to expedite the end of all transitional periods and culminate in national elections.

We take note of the meeting held on March 10th at the invitation of the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States. We also stress the imperative for convergence and complementarity of the ongoing efforts by international and regional organisations to avoid duplication of efforts in Libya.  

Madam President, 

On the security situation, the A3 Plus expresses concern regarding the persistent tensions and sporadic clashes among armed groups in Libya, despite the hold of the 2020 ceasefire agreement, a fact that we positively note.

Additionally, it is crucial to acknowledge that some external actors have significantly contributed to Libya’s instability. These actors have funnelled money and weapons to various proxies, placing their personal interests above the well-being of the Libyan population. This exacerbation has further complicated Libya’s path toward ending violent conflict and establishing stable State institutions.

Mindful of the negative impact of these external actors, the A3 Plus reiterates that the withdrawal of all foreign forces, foreign fighters, and mercenaries from Libya is a matter of urgency. Their departure is crucial for a favourable and conducive environment for the advancement of the ongoing political process, for establishing security and stability in Libya and preserving its unity, independence, and territorial integrity. 

The reconciliation process in Libya is a critical step towards healing the wounds in Libyan society and promoting national unity. We, therefore, encourage all Libyans to engage in this process, wholeheartedly and work towards forgiveness, understanding, and mutual respect. In this regard, we emphasize the need for good preparations to ensure the success of the upcoming reconciliation Conference.  

 We also urge all parties to support this process, and we welcome, in this regard, the role that the African Union has been playing through its High-Level Committee on Libya. 

Madam President,

On the humanitarian front, the A3 Plus reiterates the need to ease access of humanitarian aid for the benefit of population and calls on all Libyan leaders to rise to their responsibility and unite their efforts, including managing the reconstruction of Derna and other flood-effected areas.     

We also reiterate our deep concern with the continued dire situation of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers in Libya that continue to be exposed to serious protection risks. Deportations and collective expulsions of migrants and asylum seekers in inhumane conditions are also of great concern.

 We, therefore, continue to urge the Libyan authorities, with the support of the international community, to work effectively to improve the plight of migrants and refugees in Libya, consider alternatives to detention, and hold perpetrators of violations accountable.

Madam President,

On sanctions, A3 Plus would like to recall the importance of safeguarding and returning of Libya’s frozen assets. These funds should be redirected towards supporting the Libyan people and rebuilding the country. In that regard, it is crucial to preserve their integrity and value, ensuring that they solely serve the interests of Libyans.

To conclude, Madam President, the A3 Plus reaffirms its unwavering solidarity with the resilient people of Libya, during these challenging times. We firmly believe that they will overcome the obstacles they face. 

To this end, it is crucial that effective and genuine political will guides Libya toward peace, stability, and a brighter future.

Thank You!

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