Libya’s UN-recognised Government of National Agreement (GNA), has condemned Egypt’s warning of the military intervention in Libya, the labelling of a ” declaration of war “.
On Saturday, the Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah el-Sissi warned that if pro-NEG forces advanced on the strategic city of Sirte – about 450 kilometers (280 miles) east of the capital Tripoli – it could cause a “direct” intervention by the Cairo.
He also ordered the Egyptian army to be ready to carry out missions inside or outside the country, in order to protect its national security amid tensions over Turkey’s intervention in Libya.
In response, the GNA said in a statement that Egypt, the move was ” a hostile and direct intervention, and is equivalent to a declaration of war “.
The statement comes on the eve of a virtual meeting of the Arab League, the ministers of foreign affairs of Libya, in which the RNG refused to participate.
For the Libyan state, ” interference in its internal affairs, the attack on its sovereignty, whether by statements … like those of the Egyptian, the president or by the support of the coup, militias and mercenaries, is unacceptable “, the RNG says.
He said he was open to ” all the impartial mediation … under the aegis of the united nations “, but rejected the ” unilateral and extra-judicial initiatives “.
Oil-rich Libya is plunged into chaos since the NATO-backed 2011 uprising toppled longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi.
Since 2015, a power struggle between the Tripoli-based RNG against renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar, who claims the legitimacy of the east-based elected parliament.
Haftar has been tried in vain to seize the capital from the month of April, 2019, with the support of Egypt, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates.
Since the beginning of June, the increase of Turkish support has helped to pro-NEG forces to take control of the north-west of Libya, the end of Haftar’s assault on Tripoli.
The RNG advance is now stopped outside the coastal city of Sirte, a strategic crossing point of Libya’s main oil fields, which remains under Haftar’s control.
Sirte and Al-Jufra, south represent a ” red line “, el-Sisi said in a television broadcast on Saturday, citing the need to protect Egypt’s porous border.
If this line is crossed, the Egyptian forces will directly intervene in Libya, el-Sisi said.
“All of Libya is a red line “, the GNA replied. “Whatever the dispute between the Libyan people, we will not allow our people to be insulted or threatened. “
But the president of Libya’s eastern-based parliament, Aguila Saleh, has championed el-Sisi of the declaration, saying in a Sunday statement that the Egyptian president had ” responded to our call to the Egyptian parliament “, in last January, Saleh has called for Egyptian intervention in Libya.
And Sunday, the jordan, the ministry of foreign affairs released a statement saying Amman supports the Cairo “against any threat to the security and stability” of Egypt.
It came after the foreign ministers of the two countries discussed the conflict in Libya on the phone.
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