10 Libyan lawmakers sacked for signing UN-backed unity deal

Libya’s unrecognised Islamist-backed parliament on Tuesday dismissed 10 lawmakers who signed a UN-brokered deal to set up a national unity government, members said.

First deputy head of the Tripoli-based General National Congress, Awad Mohammed Abdul-Sadiq, told a news conference the GNC “sacked some of the members who signed” the December agreement in Morocco.

Those parliamentarians were not “authorised” to ratify the deal and were excluded from the GNC because they “violated the (2011) constitution” and their pledge to respect the charter, he added.

A spokesman told AFP the decision affected 10 parliamentarians, including GNC vice president Saleh el-Makhzoum.

Libya has had two rival administrations, with the recognised authorities based in the country’s far east and a militia-backed authority in Tripoli since the summer of 2014.

In mid-December, only a minority of lawmakers from both sides signed the UN-backed deal to unify the government in the oil-rich North African nation.

But both the internationally recognised parliament and the GNC have opposed the deal despite calls from the international community for them to ratify the agreement.

A national unity government headed by businessman Fayez al-Sarraj and comprising 32 ministers was formed in January but was rejected by the recognised parliament.

Libya has been in chaos since the 2011 ouster of longtime dictator Moamer Kadhafi.

The UN and several countries have warned that delaying the formation of a government plays into the hands of the Islamic State group which has fed on the instability to spread in the country.

 

– AFP

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