Libya Cease-fire Talks Under Way in Geneva
Senior military officers from warring factions in Libya are in Geneva to discuss a cease-fire for a 10-month offensive being waged by eastern-based insurgents against the UN-backed government in the capital Tripoli. The Government of National Accord (GNA) is seeking to halt a wildly successful advance begun last April by the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA). The LNA is led by renegade general Khalifa Haftar, who in 2014 pulled out of a power-sharing agreement with the GNA, led by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj. The Benghazi-based insurgency has succeeded in taking important Libyan cities and oil fields, and has been harassing Tripoli since the summer. European countries that have national interests in Libya have been behind the push for a cease-fire, as is Turkey, which recently signed a bilateral agreement with the GNA to send troops in an advisory and training capacity. In return, Sarraj’s government has pledged to assist Ankara in its search for carbon-based energy resources in the eastern Mediterranean, an effort that has raised friction with the Republic of Cyprus and other countries in the basin.