Home World Wide News Eight mass graves found in area retaken from Libyan rebel general

Eight mass graves found in area retaken from Libyan rebel general

Eight mass graves found in area retaken from Libyan rebel general

<span>Photograph: Mahmud Turkia/AFP/Getty Images</span>
Photograph: Mahmud Turkia/AFP/Getty Images

The United Nations has expressed horror at the discovery of eight mass graves in Libya, mainly in the town of Tarhuna, south of Tripoli, in an area recently retaken from forces loyal to Gen Khalifa Haftar.

The UN mission in Libya said it welcomed the decision by the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) to launch an investigation into the gravesNo estimate of the number of dead has been made public, but one grave contained at least 15 badly decomposed bodies. Some graves are said to contain entire families.

The UN mission in Libya said in a statement that it “notes with horror reports on the discovery of at least eight mass graves in past days, the majority of them in Tarhuna. International law requires that the authorities conduct prompt, effective and transparent investigations into all alleged cases of unlawful deaths.”

It called on investigators to “promptly undertake the work aimed at securing the mass graves, identifying the victims, establishing causes of death and returning the bodies to next of kin”. It said it was willing to help with the inquiry.

More bodies were found in the Tarhuna hospital, and according to the GNA at least 27 people have been killed by landmines and IED left by Haftar’s fleeing forces as their siege on Tripoli collapsed.

It is widely accepted that both sides may have committed war crimes in the year-long siege, but the scale of the crimes attributed to Haftar’s allies has the potential to embarrass his principal external backers France, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Jordan.

The German ambassador to Libya, Oliver Owcza, was seen shaking hands with Haftar only on Tuesday and has faced criticism within Libya for being seeing to prop up the strongman’s credibility. Germany views the talks with Haftar as part of an attempt to revive peace talks, but many argue that a precondition of any talks should be the removal of Haftar from the scene and the development of a new political leadership in Libya’s east.

GNA diplomats in the US are working hard to persuade influential Republicans that the Trump administration’s disengagement from Libya has left a vacuum that has been filled by Russia.

Mohammed Ali Abdallah, a GNA political adviser in the US, told the Heritage Foundation, a thinktank, that unless the US stepped up there was a risk that Russia would establish a strong military presence in the southern Mediterranean, access to one of the world’s largest gas fields and control of the pipeline for illegal refugees into Europe.

Related: Wars without end: why is there no peaceful solution to so much global conflict?

He said Haftar’s backers “have either acknowledged his defeat and started to look for alternative plans or gone back the drawing board in order to escalate the crisis and make sure a stable Libya is never achieved – which is the ultimate goal of Russia.”

Abdallah said Haftar “neither wants to be or can be part of any future political solution” and his continued involvement would be a disaster.

He called on the US to increase the diplomatic pressure on allies such as the UAE to end their military support for Haftar.

Source link

قالب وردپرس


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here