Listen Download Podcast
  • RFI English News flash 04h00 - 04h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/25 04h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 04h10 - 04h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/25 04h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 05h00 - 05h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 05h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 05h10 - 05h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/24 05h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h00 - 06h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 06h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h10 - 06h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/24 06h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h30 - 06h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 06h30 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h33 - 06h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/24 06h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h00 - 07h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 07h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h30 - 07h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 07h30 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/22 14h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h06 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 14h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 14h03 - 14h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/22 14h03 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h06 - 14h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/24 14h06 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h30 - 14h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 14h30 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h33 - 14h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 05/24 14h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/22 16h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h06 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 05/24 16h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h03 - 16h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/22 16h03 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h30 - 16h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 05/24 16h30 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h33 - 17h00 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 05/22 16h33 GMT
To take full advantage of multimedia content, you must have the Flash plugin installed in your browser. To connect, you need to enable cookies in your browser settings. For an optimal navigation, the RFI site is compatible with the following browsers: Internet Explorer 8 and above, Firefox 10 and +, Safari 3+, Chrome 17 and + etc.
Africa

Support for Libya's unity government is 'eroding', says analyst

media Libyans survey the damage after an explosion at a checkpoint between Tripoli and Misrata on 24 November, 2015. Reuters/Stringer

As France said it plans to call on Monday for sanctions against Libyan ministers who "obstruct" the creation of a unity government, RFI spoke to experts who said that support and hope for it is diminishing.

Audio report 11/03/2016 - by Brenna Daldorph Listen

Libya has had rival parliaments since 2014 when an Islamist-led militia alliance took over the capital Tripoli and the internationally-recognized government fled to the city of Tobruk.

A potential list was proposed in January, but the parliament in Tobruk rejected it.

"The unity government is on shaky grounds" said Claudia Gazzini, the lead Libya analyst at Crisis Group. "Support in the country is eroding while other alternative political tracts are emerging so there are competing initiatives to the UN one."

Libyans are desperate for a solution as rival militias vie for power in the country. In the meantime, the Islamic State armed group has also gained ground and influence, which poses a serious security risk to Libya’s neighbors, including Europe, just across the Mediterranean.

Western countries agree that military action is needed to remove IS from Libya, but they want the ok of a national unity government before intervening.

The French foreign minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said Friday that he will propose imposing EU sanctions on any Libyan official who obstructs the formation of the unity government.

"In terms of the repertoire available to the international community for trying entice the main factions to sit together and agree on something, what the French are doing is among the most useful ones", said Alina Rocha Menocal, a senior research fellow in the International Development leadership program at the University of Birmingham. "Though it’s not entirely clear if it’ll help, it certainly will influence".

Libya became the hot topic at the end of the week after US President Barack Obama gave a surprisingly frank interview with American magazine The Atlantic, criticising the British and French-led bombing campaign that led to the fall of the regime of former Libyan leader Moamer Khadafi in Libya in 2011.

Obama said that the UK and France had not properly followed up after the action, claiming that British Prime Minister David Cameron had become “distracted”.

In the years since the revolution, Libya’s political transition has been anything but smooth and the international community has struggled to know what course of action to take.

"I wouldn’t say that it is one country’s fault in particular," Rocha Menocal told RFI. “I certainly think that there should have been much more collective thinking about what happens when you get rid of an undesirable dictator because it is not automatically going to be good. A transformation will follow, but we don’t know if it will be good or bad, especially if we don’t have a clear sense of what kinds of factions and forces are on the ground, fighting for power”.

For Gazzini, however, the international community needs to have a more holistic view of everything that needs to be done in Libya.

"It is important to target the radical groups in the country and push for a government of national unity, but the country is also on the verge of an economic collapse", she said.

She told RFI that the foreign currency reserves in the Libyan National Bank are plummeting at record speeds.

"There is no better recipe than an economic crisis to make terrorists or radical groups stronger", she added.

Related
 
Sorry but the period of time connection to the operation is exceeded.