In Libya, the four year political power struggle following the fall of Moammar Gadhafi’s regime split and destabilized the country.
On 17 December, after more than a year of UN-facilitated political negotiations, envoys from Libya’s two rival governments and a number of independent political figures signed the Libyan Political Agreement that will form a unified Libyan government of National Accord. Subsequently, the UN Security Council, on December 23, unanimously passed on UN Security Council Resolution 2259 welcoming the formation of the new Government of National Accord and sending a clear message that this unified government will be the sole legitimate government of Libya. The Presidency Council that will lead the new Government is currently working actively towards the formation of the new government, with the support of the United Nations.
To address Libya's threat from ISIL and other terrorist groups, Libya needs a united government. In the past weeks, ISIL - affiliated militants have conducted a number of violent attacks in Libya. In the first week of January, they attempted to capture the Sidra oil port and the nearby oil town of Ras Lanuf, and in the process set on fire a number of oil tanks.
On January 7th, a suicide bomber drove a truck bomb into a training camp for Coast Guard cadets. At least 65 people were killed.
The United States strongly condemns these attacks, and extends its condolences to the families of the victims.
“Violent extremists including ISIL-affiliated groups threaten all Libyans throughout the country. With their attacks on oil fields, they are threatening resources that belong to the Libyan people and that all Libyans must strive to protect for future generations,” said State Department Spokesperson John Kirby.
“These incidents stress again the urgent need for Libya’s new leaders to formalize the Government of National Accord, as outlined in the Libyan Political Agreement. This is a vital step to address the country’s critical humanitarian, economic, and security challenges.”