UN envoy to Libya Jan Kubis said on Monday that time is crucial if Libya hopes to complete a legal framework for the planned elections, which will be held in time for December.
“The (Libyan) government has taken the necessary steps to hold elections, but we need a legal framework,” Kubis said at the opening of a meeting in Algeria with Libya’s neighbors.
“The members of the Riksdag are now trying to complete the election law and time is running out,” Kubis said in statements made by France by the official Algerian news agency APS.
The two-day ministerial meeting aims to help Libyans achieve national reconciliation and draw up a roadmap for organizing the votes.
But recent talks in Geneva have revealed deep differences over when elections should be held, what elections should be held and on what constitutional grounds threaten to throw Libya back into chaos.
The North African country was gripped by violence and political turbulence in the aftermath of the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that drove dictator Moammar Gadhafi and killed him.
In recent years, the oil-rich country has split between two rival administrations.
After Putist General Khalifa Haftar’s forces were led from the west of the country last year, the two camps signed a ceasefire in Geneva in October.
The same deal reached in October also stipulated that all foreign forces and mercenaries – who support different sides of the conflict – withdraw from Libya within three months, a provision that has not been complied with. The UN has often stated that the presence of mercenaries is a threat to peace and stability in Libya.
An interim administration was set up in March this year to prepare for presidential and parliamentary votes on 24 December.
Kubis said on Monday that Libya’s UN-backed government has “set aside the necessary budget for the elections”.
“But it is important that we have a legal framework as soon as possible” for the measurements, he emphasized.
Kubis said he told lawmakers to “take responsibility and not waste time.” He also called on Libya’s neighbors to appoint observers to monitor the vote.