25 October 2020
President of the Republic of South Africa and Chairperson of the African Union, H.E Cyril Ramaphosa, welcomed the signing of a complete country-wide and permanent cease-fire agreement between rival forces in Libya. The announcement was made in Geneva, Switzerland.
“We congratulate all signatories for agreeing to this groundbreaking permanent ceasefire agreement. The signing of this agreement is an important step towards Silencing the Guns in Africa,” said Ramaphosa.
The oil rich country has been in turmoil since the overthrowing of Col Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. In April 2019 Khalifa Haftar launched an assault on the UN-recognised government. This led to major conflict on Libyan soil.
The A.U Chairperson stressed the need for external parties to respect the UNSC arms embargo and called on them to refrain from interfering in the internal affairs of Libya. He also emphasised the importance of AU/UN collaboration in supporting the Libyan parties in search for a political solution.
“We further support the appeal by the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres for all stakeholders, regional and international actors to respect the provisions of the cease-fire agreement and ensure its implementation without delay in order to bring an end to this conflict. This includes ensuring the full and unconditional respect of the UN Security Council arms embargo,” said Ramaphosa.
The A.U said the ceasefire agreement, its enforcement and observation is a critical first step in creating conducive conditions for lasting peace. It paves the way for the resumption of the intra-Libyan dialogue, which is the only legitimate platform that can produce a durable Libyan-owned political solution.