Situation in Libya

US rejects Algerian diplomat as new UN envoy to Libya

The United States has rejected considering the former Algerian foreign minister Ramtane Lamamra by the United Nations for the replacement of Ghassan Salame as Head of UNSMIL and envoy to Libya, according to AFP.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has begun searching for a new envoy to Libya, diplomatic sources said Wednesday, after the United States refused to endorse the previous candidate, AFP reported a diplomat as saying.

“On Wednesday, during a closed-door meeting on Libya, a UN official told the Security Council that Guterres had launched a search for a new candidate,” another source told AFP, saying Guterres was working hard to make a proposal.

“Former Algerian foreign minister Ramtane Lamamra seemed to be all but confirmed in early March. But the US increasingly posed “questions” about his candidacy, even though “everyone else” supported him,” a diplomat told AFP.

Another source told AFP that Washington could have considered Lamamra as too close to Russia, which is accused of sending mercenaries to support Haftar.

The US mission to the UN gave no further explanation for opposing Lamamra, 67, who served as Algeria’s foreign minister from 2013 to 2017 and as African Union commissioner for peace and security from 2008 to 2013. He is considered an experienced diplomat and has been a mediator in several African conflicts, notably in Liberia.

Source: The Libya Oserver

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