International Actors Undermine Libya’s Hopes for Peace

In an interview with the New Atlanticist, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East Karim Mezran, argues that international actors are undermining UN efforts to broker peace in Libya. “If all these external forces support troops on the ground, then the push for war is much stronger than the push for peace,” Mezran said.

As violence escalates in the troubled North African nation, it finds itself caught between two combatant governments fighting for control. The specter of the Islamic State (ISIS), the militant group which has seized large swathes of Iraqi and Syrian land, is also now cause for concern in Libya, as US fears of militant training camps emerge.

With Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Qatar, and France, laying claim to their stake in the conflict, Mezran hints at a possible shift in the balance of power, discusses the likelihood of a successful UN-led effort, and describes the role that Europe should be playing to contain the threat of a spillover. Read the full interview here.

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Image: Photo: Black smoke billows in the sky above areas where clashes took place between in Benghazi November 26, 2014. (Reuters/Esam Omran Al-Fetori)