5 + 5 Military Commission discusses Libyan crisis with Russia

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Libya’s Joint 5 + 5 Military Commission held a meeting in Moscow on Wednesday to discuss the upcoming elections with Russian officials, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

The 5 + 5 Joint Military Commission is made up of five senior Libyan government officers and five chosen by the coup leader General Khalifa Haftar.

The ministry noted that representatives of the committee had a meeting with Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, who is also the President’s Special Representative of Russia for the Middle East and Africa.

Defense ministry officials also held meetings, the statement said.

The meeting focused on the upcoming elections in Libya, which will take place on December 24.

The Russian side stressed its hopes for the formation of a permanent government and state institutions in Libya after the elections, and noted that Moscow was ready to provide support to resolve the problems of the 5 + 5 commission.

There has been little peace or security in Libya since the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that overthrew Muammar Gaddafi. The country split between warring factions in the East and the West in 2014.

Eastern forces were supported by the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Russia and Egypt. The previous government in Tripoli, in the west, recognized by the United Nations, was supported by Turkey.

Foreign mercenaries and weapons have poured into the country since Haftar launched his offensive, with Russia and the United Arab Emirates being the main suppliers to the coup leader. According to the UN, there are currently 20,000 foreign and / or mercenary forces in Libya.

The Russian group Wagner, which is owned by businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin, a figure close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, is known as one of the main groups that sent mercenaries to fight in Libya.

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