LFJL urges the UN Security Council to demand an immediate halt to military action in Libya and guarantees for the protection of civilians 

April 5, 2019

Lawyers for Justice in Libya (LFJL) welcomes the UN Security Council (UNSC) emergency session on Libya and calls for a strong international standpoint in favour of accountability and the rule of law.   

As the UN Security Council (UNSC) prepares for an emergency session on Libya later today, LFJL calls for an immediate stop to military action in Libya and for guarantees for the protection of civilians.  

The emergency session,called by the UK Government on 4 April, follows the recent escalation in Libya,with General Haftar’s forces moving towards Tripoli, which is controlled by the internationally-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) led by Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj. The GNA has responded by declaring a state of emergency and instructing its military forces and allies to prepare for a potential confrontation. Haftar’s latest move comes after the rapid spread of his Libyan National Army (LNA) forces in southern Libya, where he secured the control of strategic oil fields and the alleged support of a large portion of the population. With an upcoming UN-sponsored National Reconciliation Conference, originally planned for 14-16 April, the tension between the two key actors in the country has risen dramatically over the past few days.   

LFJL expresses its concern about these latest developments further undermining the rule of law in Libya and putting the peace process at risk. It calls for the immediate halt to any military action and the prioritisation of diplomatic routes to reconciliation. With competing militias mobilising around the capital and tension growing, LFJL also urges all actors involved to refrain from targeting civilians, which would represent a flagrant violation of the fundamental principles of international humanitarian and human rights law.  

As the situation on the ground remains uncertain, it is thus crucial for any international effort aimed to stabilise the situation in Libya to prioritise the rule of law and push for the establishment of accountability mechanisms to end impunity in the country.  

“We urge the international community to take a strong position and veto those actors who are operating with impunity and outside the rule of law from participating in the peace process. No peace will be sustainable without justice being at its heart and, for that, accountability for violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law must be a key component of any settlement.As we follow the development of the situation on the ground, we reiterate our call to all actors involved not to target civilians and to respect the fundamental principles of international humanitarian and human rights law”, said LFJL’s Director Elham Saudi.  


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