UN: "Time is right" for Geneva Libya talks

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UN negotiator and head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Bernardino Leon. Photo: UN /Amanda Voisard

Talks to help find a resolution to the conflict in Libya are slated to start again at the United Nations in Geneva because "the time is right" to do so, the UN said Friday.

Libya has been divided and at war since 2011, following the overthrow of president Muammar al-Qhadafi.

But in an apparent attempt to temper expectations of a breakthrough, reporters were told that the renewed dialogue did not mean that there's been "any great revelation" between the rival factions.

Daniel Johnson has more.

Details are still sketchy about who's taking part in discussions on a peace agreement in Libya, or even what format they might take, according to the UN.

That will become clearer once they arrive at the UN in Geneva on Monday.

It's believed, however, that around 30 invitees will take part in the political dialogue, which is due to end on Wednesday.

United Nations spokesperson Ahmad Fawzi said he did not know why negotiator Bernardino Leon believed that now was the right time to hold new discussions in the Swiss city.

"I don't know why he decided that the time was right, but clearly he thinks it is…He wouldn't have announced this unless he thought there was sufficient common ground to bring the parties here, all the way from there to Geneva. "

But Fawzi also told reporters that the new round of talks did not mean that there's been "any great revelation" between the rival factions.

And he repeated UN negotiator Leon's acknowledgment that some of the opposing parties still have reservations about what has been achieved to date.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations, Geneva.

Duration: 1’12″


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