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US says Russia can not support US call for Libya ceasefire: diplomats



UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – The United States and Russia said Thursday they could not support a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire in Libya at that time, as diplomats said, as mortar bombs in one Suburb of Cyprus, the Libyan capital Tripoli.

A Libyan man leaves on April 17, 2019 in Abu Salim (Tripoli, Libya) in Abu Salim near a house damaged by an overnight damage. The recent flare-up of violence as his Libyan National Army (LNA) early this Months into the outskirts of Tripoli, diplomats said.

The United States gave no reason for its position on the draft resolution, which would also require countries with influence over the warring factions to ensure compliance, and access to unconditional humanitarian aid in Libya, which has existed since Muammar Gaddafi of the anarchy was captured was overthrown in 2011.

The UN United States Mission declined to comment, and the Russian UN mission did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A resolution needs nine votes and no veto from the United States, Britain, France, Russia or China – the so-called permanent Five – to pass. It was not immediately clear whether Britain would continue negotiating a draft next week.

The United States and Russia declared their positions at a closed council meeting of UN Libyan envoy Ghassan Salame, who called for a ceasefire, according to diplomats. He warned that weapons are pouring into the country and heading towards a serious humanitarian military situation.

The reluctance of the US to support the Security Council's actions is in contrast to Washington's earlier opposition to Haftar's offensive, which began when US Secretary General Antonio Guterres visited Tripoli.

Some US diplomats have suggested that the United States would try to gain time as the administration of President Donald Trump finds out how to deal with the latest developments in Libya.

"I think there are a number of views on the political side in Washington and they have not reconciled them, and they are not quite sure where the President is," a senior UN official said. Diplomat, relying on the condition of anonymity.

"The American system is trying to evaluate all the scenarios and find out which is in the best interests of the US and has not done so yet," the diplomat said.

CONCERN

Haftar forces predicted victory within a few days, but Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj's internationally recognized government has arrested them in the southern suburbs with the help of armed groups from various West Libyan factions.

A United Security Council informally expressed its concerns on April 5, calling for all forces to escalate and halt military activity, and specifically called on the LNA.

In the following days, however, the Council was unable to make a more formal statement, diplomats said, as Russia rejected a reference to the LNA, while the United States said it could not agree to a text that did not Mention the forces of Haftar.

US. Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo said in a statement on April 7: "We have made it clear that we reject the military offensive by Khalifa Haftar troops and urge the immediate cessation of these military operations against the Libyan capital."

Support for Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, who see it as an anchor for restoring stability and fighting Islamist fighters, while most Western powers have supported Serraj.

Trump met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on 9 April.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian spoke with Pompeo on Thursday about Libya and both agreed on the need for a "quick" ceasefire. The United Nations political process, the French Foreign Ministry said in a statement. Paris has supported Haftar in the past.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Additional reporting by John Irish in Paris; Editing by Peter Cooney

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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