Maas: withdrawal of troops from Libya
Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas expects the withdrawal of foreign fighters from Libya to begin soon. The Federal Government had mediated.
New York (dpa) - German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas expects the withdrawal of foreign fighters from Libya to begin in the next few weeks. The process is to start with Syrian mercenaries deployed by both sides, Maas said in New York on Thursday. "That would be the first step towards a large-scale withdrawal of foreign forces from Libya. The civil war would not be able to flare up again without these forces, either." Speaking at a UN Security Council meeting, Maas called on the 15 member states to support a troop withdrawal "without any delay".
Germany has taken on a mediating role in the conflict, which has been continuing for a decade. Three weeks ago, high-ranking representatives from 16 countries agreed at a conference in Berlin that foreign fighters should be withdrawn from Libya. The participants included the most important actors in Libya, such as Russia, Turkey, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. Maas said that those taking part had declared their willingness to withdraw the Syrian mercenaries as a first step. He assumes "that what has been promised (...) will be implemented in the coming weeks".