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​‘No loser, no victor solution is best for Libya’

Published time: August 28, 2014 09:03
rregular forces loyal to former army general Khalifa Haftar stand by an armed vehicle during clashes with Islamist militants in the eastern city of Benghazi June 2, 2014. (Reuters)

The conflict in Libya should not be interpreted as one group’s crimes against another group, Edmund Ghareeb, an expert on US-Arab relations, told RT.

Ghareeb believes we could look back at the history of the Lebanon conflict to find a solution for Libya.

‘When Lebanon was emerging out of the civil war there was a concept that was advocated at the time, which may work as a temporary solution. And that is: no loser, no victor,’ Ghareeb said.

He considers what is going on in Libya is not a democratic transition, instead we are seeing ongoing violence and conflicts among different forces, different militias, which have their own interests and their own agendas.

“To deal with the problem Libya is facing, Libya may need to get help from the outside. This help is to provide means to try to bring about some reconciliation among the different Libyan groups,” he added.

'Conflict in Libya will deteriorate if there is no representative government'

Ghareeb argues that as various forces in Libya have weapons, are well organized, and some of them had experience in fighting, it has strengthened their position and left the parliament in a weaker state.

“There is a real confrontation going on, there is a real struggle for power among these different forces within Libya. There was a new parliament that was elected, and this parliament received much support from Libyan voters – and while there were representatives of the different Islamic forces this election showed that these groups have limited influence,” claims Ghareeb.

He assumes the conflict is likely to continue and deteriorate unless there is a government that is going to be more representative.

“There is a parliament right now which had committees trying to form and write a new constitution. But this government and parliament are generally weak and they are not as well armed as some of the other forces and they need support,” Ghareeb told RT.

He added that there has to be reconciliation among the different forces and groups in Libya. Unless different forces are represented, and the interests of the different groups are taken into the account, we are likely to see an escalation of the violence and fighting that might spread further.

“When the Western countries withdrew we did not really see help to the new Libyan government and the institutions. Libya is continuing to suffer from that intervention as well as from the earlier misrule under Gaddafi,” he said.

Ghareeb believes it would make much more sense to get international help if there will be any kind of intervention to try to bring an end to violence and anarchy in Libya.

“It should come under the United Nations umbrella rather than under the umbrella of this or that country. Because what we have seen in Libya is that there is a proxy war, in addition to the conflicts that we have seen that are based on religious ideology or tribal affiliation, or ethnicity or regionalism,” he said.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.