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Thursday, 21 November 2019

El Sisi, Merkel agree to clamp down on foreign interference in Libya

El Sisi, Merkel agree to clamp down on foreign interference in Libya: President Abdel Fattah El Sisi agreed to reduce foreign intervention in Libya during a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday, according to an Ittihadiya statement. The statement mentioned little specifics, but it appears that Merkel reiterated her administration’s recent call to end foreign intervention in the war-torn north African country. Both leaders have “agreed to coordinate efforts to resolve the situation in Libya in a comprehensive manner.. preserving the resources of the state and its institutions and restricting foreign intervention,” reads the statement.

Does this mean that Egypt will actually wind down its material support for General Haftar? Egypt — along with the UAE and France — are the three biggest foreign supporters of Libyan General Khalifa Haftar’s eastern forces, which are currently mounting an offensive against the UN-backed government of Fayez Al Serraj in Tripoli. Although both leaders agreed to “restrict foreign intervention,” it’s really not clear from the statement whether the Merkel meeting will result in an Egyptian policy shift towards Libya, or even what is meant by foreign intervention. Berlin — which backs Al Serraj’s government — will host in December an international conference aimed at resolving the conflict.

Also from Berlin: El Sisi discussed cooperation with German Minister of Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier, according to a separate Ittihadiya statement. Other meetings from El Sisi’s day in Berlin, where he attended the G20 Compact with Africa conference, included a sit-down Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community Horst Seehofer.

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