UN to hold briefing on UN Support Mission in Libya

Photo: Basil Sou

The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) will submit a report to the UN Security Council today on the humanitarian and security situations in Libya.

Established following the Libyan Civil War, UNSMIL supports peacebuilding under the UN Security Council’s authority. Since 2016, UNSMIL has mediated between the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) and the Libyan Arab Armed Forces (LAAF) and facilitated a ceasefire. Still, despite its role as a neutral arbiter, the UN has been criticised as overly permissive of the activities of its member states in Libya.

Expect today’s report to cover the ceasefire’s troubled implementation. Effecting significant humanitarian improvement in Libya through the UN remains unlikely in the near-term. International backers of contending factions include Turkey, which has supplied the GNA with weapons despite an active UN arms embargo, as well as Russia, which supports pro-LAAF militia activity. While language in the ceasefire’s text affirms that expulsion of foreign militias is critical to Libyan stability, neither Turkish nor Russian-backed outfits have left the country. In the medium-term, expect the UN to continue urging diplomatic resolutions to disputes between the GNA and LAAF, and to discourage violations of the agreement through heightened use of international monitoring protocols.

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