UN chief applauds Libyan warring parties' responses to humanitarian truce

Alwasat - Cairo Mon 23 Mar 2020, 04:42 AM
alwasat radio

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Saturday welcomed the positive responses by the Libyan warring parties to calls for a humanitarian truce amid COVID-19 fears.

"The secretary-general welcomes the positive responses by the Government of National Accord (GNA) and the Libyan National Army (LNA) on March 18 and 21 respectively, to the calls for a humanitarian pause to stop the fighting," said Stephane Dujarric, Guterres's spokesman, in a statement.

"Given the already dire humanitarian situation in Libya and the possible impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the secretary-general calls on the parties to join forces to address the threat and to ensure unhindered access of humanitarian aid throughout the country," it said.

"The secretary-general hopes that the humanitarian pause will be translated into a lasting ceasefire. He therefore calls on the parties to accept the draft ceasefire agreement emanating from the 5+5 Joint Military Commission talks facilitated by the United Nations in Geneva last month," according to the statement.

Some Arab countries on Tuesday urged Libya's warring parties to stop fighting to allow the country to respond to the threat posed by COVID-19.

The LNA on Saturday reportedly followed the Tripoli-based government in welcoming the call for a pause in fighting to allow the country to concentrate on the danger from the virus.

In response to the pandemic, both the GNA and the LNA have pledged money to local health services and closed ports and airports.

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