Egypt’s envoy to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and chairperson of the Counter Terrorism Committee (CTC) Amr Aboulatta called on Friday for a joint meeting with the Libya Sanctions Committee and the IS and Al Qaeda sanctions committee to discuss means of combating terrorism in Libya on 27 June at the UN headquarters in New York City.
Aboulatta said Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry assigned him to call for such meeting, adding that Egypt’s significance in solving the Libyan issue has increased following the latest terrorist attack in upper Egypt’s city of Minya, which was allegedly conducted by militants who received training in Libya, according to state media.
He explained that such a meeting is of utmost importance as it is scheduled to discuss terrorist threats in Libya, as well as challenges and means of aid and assistance which the UNSC could offer Libya.
Spokesperson of the Libyan National Army Ahmed Al-Mesmary reportedly said on Friday in a press conference that Libyan terrorist groups conducted previous attacks in Egypt, including the killing of the late Egyptian Prosecutor General, claiming that Qatar’s and Turkey’s support for terrorist groups “has been exposed.”
In late May, Aboulatta expressed to the UNSC that Egypt’s recent airstrikes targeting terrorist groups in Libya fell under the right of the country for self defence, which is legitimised by the UN charter.
On May 27, Egypt has carried out airstrikes on the city of Derna in Eastern Libya, following a shooting of Coptic Christians in Minya that killed 28 civilians.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi said that the persons accused of carrying out the attack were trained by militants in Libya.
Since the downfall of late Libyan president Muammar Gaddafi, Libyan has been governed by two main conflicting governments: the internationally recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) in the east, and the self-declared government of National Salvation, also known as the General National Congress (GNC), in the west.
Militias and extremist groups have also seized large territories and declared legitimacy of further entities.
Egypt has strong ties with the GNA, as Al-Sisi expressed earlier in May during his meeting with Leader of the Libyan National Army field marshal Haftar in Cairo that Egypt supported the Libyan army in combating terrorism, as well as seeking a peaceful solution in Libya. Haftar, however, has in the past worked against the GNC and set up centres of military rule in areas controlled by his forces.
Al-Sisi also called for lifting the arms embargo on Libya, which was imposed by the UNSC in February 2011.
Aboulatta was seated as a chairperson of the CTC in January 2016, the council that was established after the September 11 terrorist attack in the United States and is mainly concerned with deciding policies of which the United Nations Member States could work to fight terrorism within and outside their borders, as well as to offer counterterrorism technical support.