Situation in Libya

Report: Libya’s Prime Minister Sarraj to resign soon

Press TV – Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj will announce his resignation soon, a report says, amid ongoing negotiations with a rival power camp about the political future of the country.

Citing unnamed officials, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday that Sarraj was expected to announce the decision by the end of the week.

Sarraj, however, will stay in a caretaker capacity through negotiations for a new government in Geneva next month, according to the report.

Sarraj’s internationally-recognized government controls parts of western Libya. It regained full control of the capital, Tripoli, in June, after repelling a yearlong offensive by rebels under the command of military strongman Khalifa Haftar. The rebels support the rival administration based in the east of the country, which resigned a few days ago amid popular protests.

Libya initially plunged into chaos in 2011, when a popular uprising and a NATO intervention led to the ouster of long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Sarraj’s government and the rival administration were formed in 2014.

During the Geneva talks, the rival sides will be asked to agree on a new presidential council structure that unifies the country’s dueling administrations and schedule elections, according to Bloomberg.

In talks held in Switzerland earlier this month, the rivals agreed to hold elections within 18 months and restructure the government.

The talks have also boosted the prospect of negotiations to restart oil production in the country.

Libya, which sits atop the largest oil reserves in Africa, has been forced to stop oil production since the rebels took control of the export terminals and fields in the east in January and launched a push to squeeze the resources of the Tripoli government. The blockade has cost Libya 6.5 billion dollars in lost revenue.

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