EU may reduce sanctions to foster Libyan peace

Italian FM urges migrant accord implementation, respecting rights

07 February, 10:08

    Italian Foreign Minister, Angelino Alfano, at the European Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels, Italian Foreign Minister, Angelino Alfano, at the European Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels,

     BRUSSELS - The European Foreign Affairs Council noted in its conclusions on Monday that it was prepared to review restrictive measures on Libya in order to help support peace, stability and security. It also urged all those involved to avoid anything that might undermine the political transition and to engage in constructive efforts and significant dialogue. Three individuals against the Serraj government currently have their assets frozen and are banned from travel. Two are from Tripoli (General National Congress GNC Khalifa al-Ghawil, who is protected by Islamists, and former GNC chief Nouri Abu Sahmain) and one from Tobruk (Parliament Speaker Aguila Saleh).

    The sanctions were prolonged on September 30 for six months. The conclusions do not contain any explicit reference to General Haftar but the ''urgent need'' to reunify all the armed forces is stressed. The EU said that it would focus more on providing training, equipment and other support to the Coast Guard and the Libyan Navy in line with the statement from the recent Malta summit and in order to halt the migration flow on the Central Mediterranean route and harm the ''business model'' of human traffickers. Italian foreign minister Angelino Alfano reportedly asked his counterparts to reopen their embassies in Tripoli, as Italy has done.

    On the issue of a recently signed agreement on migrants, Alfano said that it should now be implemented while being respectful of human rights. Many NGOs have criticized the agreement on the latter point. Alfano said that he had spoken with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi and that he would soon be speaking to International Organization for Migration (IOM) chiefs in order to work jointly for compliance with international and humanitarian law as concerns the camps in Libya. ''Our collaboration,'' he added, ''will be for stability, security and the improvement of situations, including from the point of view of Libyan infrastructure.''

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