Malta’s Foreign Minister Carmelo Abela has told a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Minister’s Council (FAC) that, ‘Malta will continue to unwaveringly support the UN-facilitated process in Libya,’ and that the country calls on ‘all parties to do the same. Relations with Libya have always been pivotal for peace, stability, and security in the Mediterranean region, and will remain so for years to come.’
While expressing his disappointment at the current situation in Libya, Minister Abela said that it was ‘a short-term objective’ to call for ‘a comprehensive and durable ceasefire’ that would bring about negotiation between the warring groups.
‘Diplomacy is the only way forward’ Abela told fellow Ministers and representatives of the EU.
The Minister was making the comments as renewed violence has been unsettling the country since April 4th. The conflict is understood to have started when the rebel commander of Libya’s eastern forces (the Libyan National Army) began marching on the capital Tripoli and the Government of National Accord under the leadership of Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj (GNA).
According to the World Health Organisation, over 430 people have been killed and at least 2,110 have been wounded since the violence erupted. Over 55,000 have been displaced.
Along with the conflict in Libya, Minister Abela also stressed the importance of finding solutions to the conflicts in the Sahel region of the African continent.
He stated that it was important to recognize the connection between development and humanitarian tasks. Abela stressed that, ‘a commitment to investment in youth is an important deliverable as it better prepares Sahel youth populations for the job market and will simultaneously create more and better jobs.’