February 9, 2015
Foreign Affairs Council meeting
Brussels, 9 February 2015
- The EU welcomes the holding of the UN-facilitated Libyan political dialogue process started in Geneva. The EU is encouraged by the two rounds of talks at political level and by the launch of discussions between municipal and local council representatives. The EU commends the efforts by the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General (UNSRSG) Bernardino León in bringing the parties to the table. The EU believes that it is important for this process to be as inclusive as possible so that all Libyans feel represented by the decisions there adopted. It commends those who have participated in the Geneva discussions and calls on those who have not joined so far to participate in these discussions which are critical to the peace, stability and security of Libya.
- The EU renews its full support to the efforts of the UNSRSG to secure a negotiated settlement and to the work of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and it is looking forward to the launch of the other envisaged tracks. The EU is willing to contribute to the Confidence Building Measures as agreed in the Geneva talks and it is exploring with UNSMIL how to assist the UN in the different dialogue tracks envisaged for the process.
- The EU is convinced that there is no military solution to this conflict. Only a political solution can provide a sustainable way forward and contribute to peace and stability in Libya. It is critical at this stage to have an unconditional ceasefire that it is respected and upheld by all sides.
- The EU expresses its profound concern at the continued violence and deplores the loss of life caused by the ongoing political divisions and conflict on the ground. It condemns the attack on the Greek vessel on 4 January that resulted in the loss of lives of EU citizens.
- The EU believes that the independence and proper functioning of the Central Bank of Libya, National Oil Corporation and other key financial institutions must be preserved and protected. The EU condemns actions against Libya’s national assets, financial institutions and natural resources, which risk depriving the Libyan people of the benefits of the sustainable development of their economy.
- The EU reiterates its readiness to introduce as soon as it is deemed necessary and in full coordination with UNSRSG, restrictive measures against spoilers of the dialogue process in line with UNSCR 2174 which allows for the listing of individuals who threaten the peace, stability or security in Libya, or who undermine its political transition. Those responsible for violence and those who obstruct or undermine Libya’s democratic transition must face consequences for their actions.
- The EU recalls its firm condemnation of terrorism in all its forms, including the attack against the Corinthia hotel in Tripoli on 27 January, and reiterates that terrorism has no place in the future of a peaceful and democratic Libya. The EU is concerned by evidence of increased activity of terrorist and extremist groups and recognizes the potential threat that these groups present to the future stability of the country, region and the EU.
- The EU welcomes the public statements of support for the UN-facilitated Libyan political dialogue from the African Union and the League of Arab States and encourages neighbours and regional partners to engage constructively in support of the UN coordination efforts. The EU reiterates its call on external parties to refrain from actions that might exacerbate current divisions and undermine Libya’s democratic transition, to strictly respect the arms embargo, and to fully support the UN-led dialogue process.
- The EU reaffirms its strong condemnation of all human rights violations and abuses in Libya, use of violence against civilians, institutions and public intimidation. The EU stresses the need to ensure accountability for all violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. It believes that internal and international accountability mechanisms should be strengthened in order to address all abuses and violations and therefore calls on relevant institutions to investigate these crimes. It reiterates its support to the efforts of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to end impunity for the most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole. The cooperation of all relevant actors in Libya with the ICC is of crucial importance.
- The EU calls on all parties in Libya to ensure the protection of civilians and the facilitation of assistance to people in need by ensuring safe, unhindered and timely humanitarian access and the security of humanitarian aid workers. The EU supports all efforts made to address the deteriorating humanitarian situation, notably the displacement of people and disruption of access to basic services. The humanitarian situation requires additional international support to respond to the displacement and needs of the affected population. The EU is already the largest donor of assistance in Libya and has recently scaled up its support to alleviate the precarious conditions of those vulnerable groups like the internally displaced or migrants directly or indirectly affected by the Libya crisis.
- The EU stands by the Libyan people and reaffirms its commitment to continue supporting Libya in its transition. The EU will continue to support key Libyan institutions such as the High National Electoral Commission and the Constitutional Drafting Assembly. EU support continues in other sectors like reconciliation, civil society, promotion of human rights and migration. When the political and security situation in Libya allows, the EU stands ready to enhance its support to Libya, including in areas such as rule of law, security sector reform, migration and economic cooperation, making full use of all its instruments, including, if appropriate, CSDP activities, building inter alia on achievements of its CSDP Mission EUBAM Libya.
- The EU notes the upcoming review of UNSMIL’s mandate due for March and looks forward to continuing discussions with UN in view of a possible role for the EU supporting the future UNSMIL in areas where the EU has a proven value added.
- The EU remains strongly committed to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Libya.