The head of the EU's Military Commission, Claudio Graziano, said that the EU "had in the past missed the opportunity to be more present, more assertive and effective in the Libyan scenario," adding that "state actors such as Russia and Turkey, operating outside the framework of international relations in Libya and outside UN Security Council resolutions, pose a problem."
"I have experienced this crisis since its birth in 2011 as a result of the Arab Spring," the former Italian Chief of Staff said in an interview with La Repubblica newspaper.
"It is the most serious crisis because it is linked to a more comprehensive crisis in the Sahel region, which directly puts pressure on the situation in Libya," he added.
"At the time, Europe failed to provide a supportive response to the peacebuilding process in Libya that could avoid external interference," General Graziano added, noting that "the void left by the international community is already filled with actors such as Turkey and Russia, which did not follow all the rules of the international community and created a stalemate in the country."
He described the situation in Libya and in the region stretching from the central Mediterranean to the Gulf of Aden and the Horn of Africa as "a cause for concern," adding: "We are witnessing a number of pressing crises around us that we have not seen in decades."