Head of Libya's Tripoli government says he wants to quit

'I declare my sincere desire to hand over my duties to the next executive authority no later than the end of October,' Fayez al-Sarraj said.

9/17/2020 1:59:00 PM

Libya's PM Fayez al-Sarraj wants to quit by the end of October, he said on Wednesday. The decision could feed political tensions in Tripoli amid new efforts to find a political solution to the country's conflict.

'I declare my sincere desire to hand over my duties to the next executive authority no later than the end of October,' Fayez al-Sarraj said.

Adem Altan / AFP - Getty Images fileHowever, both sides are made up of unstable coalitions that have come under stress since Turkey helped the GNA turn back a 14-month LNA assault on Tripoli in June."This is effectively the starting gun for a new round of maneuvering for what comes next," said Tarek Megerisi, a policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations.

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"Ultimately it'll leave the GNA as an entity, and western Libya, a bit degraded," he added.An LNA blockade of energy exports since January has deprived the Libyan state of most of its usual revenue, worsening living standards and contributing to protests in cities controlled by both sides.

In Tripoli, the protests fuelled tensions between Sarraj and the influential Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha, whom he briefly suspended last month before restoring him to his post.Serraj's departure could lead to new infighting among other senior GNA figures, and between the armed groups from Tripoli and Bashagha's coastal city of Misrata that wield control on the ground.

Troops loyal to Libya's internationally recognized government prepare their weapon as they carry out patrols in Zamzam, near Abu Qareen, Libya, on Tuesday.Ayman Al-Sahili / Reuters"The militia issue will be more vivid," said Jalel Harchoui, a research fellow at the Clingendael Institute.

Serraj has headed the GNA since it was formed in 2015 as a result of a U.N.-backed political agreement aimed at uniting and stabilising Libya after the chaos that followed the 2011 uprising that ousted Muammar Gaddafi.Despite the failings and weakness of the government he led, he has been seen as a moderate with whom parts of the eastern faction and their foreign allies, as well as other international players, were comfortable dealing.

Read more: NBC News »

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Turkish, Russian officials nearing deal on Libya ceasefire, political process: ministerTurkey and Russia have moved closer to an agreement on a ceasefire and political process in Libya during their latest meetings in Ankara, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told an interview with broadcaster CNN Turk late on Wednesday. 🇹🇷🤗🇹🇷🤗🇹🇷🤗🇹🇷🤗🇹🇷 Nice theater show between the two allies. Now it is time to split the spoils. Well done 🇷🇺 & 🇹🇷, well done. 🇹🇷🇹🇷👏

U.N. chief to appoint special envoy to broker peace in LibyaThe U.N. Security Council on Tuesday asked Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to appoint a special envoy to broker peace in Libya, although Russia and China abstained from voting on the resolution that also extended the U.N. mission in the country. Libya was relatively peaceful until Gaddafi was killed.

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