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Why Is Mladenov Unable To Take Up Role Of UN Libya Envoy? – OpEd

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Nickolay Mladenov has told U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres he will be unable to take up the role of United Nations Libya envoy next year due to personal reasons. There were objections to two previous suggestions, and the US then insisted the job be split between a special envoy handling the diplomacy and someone to operate.

Mladenov was due to replace Ghassan Salame, who stepped down as the U.N. Libya envoy in March due to stress. Mladenov has been the U.N. Middle East envoy since 2015 so he understands the Middle East’s critical issues, especially as he was charged with mediating between Israel and the Palestinians.

Mladenov is a Bulgarian politician and diplomat who served as Bulgaria’s Minister of Defense from 27 July 2009 to 27 January 2010 and as the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the government of then prime minister Boyko Borisov from 2010 to 2013.

On 2 August 2013 Mladenov was appointed as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Representative for Iraq, and from 5 February 2015 until 31 December 2020, he served as UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process.

In other words, he has worked in many countries in the Middle East, but the situation in Libya is not the same. Libya descended into chaos after the NATO-backed overthrow of leader Gaddafi in 2011. The two government sides in the country’s war are the internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) and Khalifa Haftar’s eastern-based Libyan National Army (LNA).

On the other hand, there are many issues in the country for example, they found Iranian-produced Dehlavieh missile, also Libyan forces have intercepted a Turkish ship under a Jamaican flag heading to the port of Misrata in western Libya, Turkey is the main foreign backer of the internationally recognized Government of National Accord (GNA), in the west, the commercial cargo ship, Mabrouka, had 17 crew, including nine Turkish nationals, and containers that had not yet been inspected.

These two issues happened in one week only, in addition, the GNA and LNA signed a ceasefire deal in October 2019 and the United Nations has been pushing a political dialogue aimed at elections next year to end the long-running conflict.

Maybe Mladenovthought both sides will not stop short of withdrawing forces from the front line, the ceasefire is holding, fights between rival cities Tripoli and Benghazi have resumed and foreign fighters have left oil facilities this is the key to Libya’s economy.

Moreover, there are rivals in a civil war that has left hundreds dead and bring chaos to the country, have yet to withdraw troops from frontline positions, they also open a major coastal road linking Sirte to Misrata and rid their ranks of foreign mercenaries.

In recent years, Mladenov, alongside other mediators from Egypt and Qatar, So he can play the same role in Libya but I think he did not want to be under stress like Ghassan Salame, who resigned amid fierce fighting between Libya’s rival sides over the capital, Tripoli.

We can see that Libya is not the same as Israel when Mladenov had a significant role in defusing numerous rounds of cross-border violence that threatened another war between Israel and Hamas. Libya will continue fighting because of the ambitions of the West in the country.

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Miral Sabry Al Ashry

Miral Sabry Al Ashry is an Associate Professor at Future University (FUE), Political Mass Media Department.

One thought on “Why Is Mladenov Unable To Take Up Role Of UN Libya Envoy? – OpEd

  • January 17, 2021 at 3:03 pm
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    You mentioned only turkey and Iran, which obviously leave a big question about being bias.

    Reply

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