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Libya's rival assemblies forge agreement

During talks between Libya’s rival assemblies an agreement was forged to unify the government under a central authority and reform state institutions. 

The United Nations which had been assisting both sides has welcomed the progress made in these talks which finished on Wednesday. 

There is, however, concern that whilst administrative bodies may agree to these decisions, armed militias may not as they have benefited from the nation’s disunity. 

UN Special Envoy Ghassan Salame has confirmed to have received “an update on the progress achieved in the political talks between the two bodies and received a joint document of PC restructuring mechanism”.

Since the overthrow of Muammer Gaddafi in 2011, Libya has been governed by two parliaments based in Tripoli and backed by the UN and another in the east. These assemblies have been engaged in a power struggle since Gaddafi demise.

There is a House of Representatives in the east and a state council backed by a legislative chamber from a previous assembly. Both the House of Representatives and the state council have agreed to work with one another towards a unified Presidential Council made up of a president, two deputies and a prime minister. 

In a statement House of Representative lawmaker Abdulsalam Nusia said that “the project to reform the executive branch and unify state institutions is a national project to end the division in the country”.

There are points of contention however as Tripoli is backed by several armed groups and is home to a Presidential council led by Prime Minister Fayez Seraj. It’s legitimacy is not accepted by the east. The east is supported by the  Libyan National Army (LNA) which is headed by Khalifah Haftar. Much rests on the military’s support of this agreement.