Qatar said it rejects the announcement made last Monday by the commander of the self-proclaimed Libyan National Army, Khalifa Haftar, claiming he had been mandated by the people to rule the country, as a coup on legitimacy.
“Haftar’s announcement is a new confirmation that he seeks a coup against the international legitimacy and the Libyan national consensus,” reads a statement published on the official website of the Qatari Foreign Minister.
The statement notes that Khalifa Haftar’s declaration “rests on baseless claims” and that these claims reflect how much he underestimates the Libyan lives and minds.
“While the world’s efforts are focused on stopping bloodshed in Libya and fight the novel coronavirus epidemic, we witness the continuation of the militarization of the scene and the crackdown on civilians and the political track”, the statement points out.
It also accuses the LNA of not taking into account the tragedy of the Libyan people, including children, women, elders, and internally displaced people.
The Government of National Accord of Fayez al-Sarraj had denounced Haftar’s announcement as a “farce and a new coup”, “which is added to a long series”.
Haftar wants by his announcement “to conceal the defeat of his militias and mercenaries” and “the failure of his dictatorial project”, argued the GNA, in allusion to recent setbacks of pro-Haftar forces.
Haftar, backed by Egypt, UAE, Saudi Arabia, France and Wagner Group, a pro-Moscow mercenary company, has been pushing to unseat the GNA since April last year when he launched a military offensive to seize Tripoli.
The GNA, with the backing of Turkey and Qatar, has managed to derail the military pushing and recovered several key positions from Haftar forces this month.
On Thursday the LNA announced a humanitarian truce during the month of Ramadan, yet the truce was rejected by the Tripoli-based Presidential Council who insisted on continuing hostilities.