Speech by H.E. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi during His Meeting with Libyan Tribal Figureheads and chieftains
Friday، 17 July 2020 - 11:01 PM
In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate and the Most Merciful
Honorable Libyan Tribal Figureheads and Chieftains, representing the entire countrywide spectrum of the Libyan people,
Honorable Egyptian Tribal Figureheads and Chieftains of the Western Zone,
I welcome all Libyan tribal leaders to Egypt, your second country. I would like to reiterate that their presence in Egypt at this time sends a powerful message on the common fate of the two countries. I also welcome the Egyptian tribal sons and chieftains from the Western zone to this gathering.
I assure that the deep-rooted and inviolable historic Egyptian-Libyan relationships cannot be compromised in any way. Furthermore, I would like to assert that Egypt’s defense of Libya, or vice versa, is an embodiment of bilateral national collaboration.
I would also like to assure you of the abundantly affluence of Egyptian-Libyan common history in confronting all forms of colonialism. The Libyan heroic championships, notably topped by Chieftain Omar Al-Mokhtar, and the brave struggles throughout ages, provide ample evidence on the people’s overwhelming rejection of external intervention plundering the Libyan wealth.
Egypt is counting on the unwavering determination of the Libyan free tribes refusing the continuation of the current status quo there. I assert Egypt’s readiness to provide all genuine efforts to Libyan brethren to put an end to this crisis. I would like to reiterate that Egypt would never allow the resurgence of the armed militias once again in Libya, or that it would entrench a new hotbed or haven for terrorists and outlaws, even though it takes Egypt to directly interfere in the Libyan affairs to curb terrorism.
We call on all Libyan tribes in the eastern, southern and western regions to review the position of their sons stationed in fighting, and urge them to the importance of building the homeland, handing their weapons over in the first place and merging in a unified national army whose goal is the interest of the country with no personal ambitions. Let me stop at this point and say: “When I was the Minister of Defense in 2012/13, we received Libyan cadets to be officers at the Military College in Egypt. As I previously said, I assure you that we are ready to receive Libyan sons, equip and train them to be the core of the Libyan National Army (LNA).”
I would like to tell you that here, in Egypt, we do not train the army to have several affiliations; it has only one affiliation to the home land. Its affiliation is neither based on religion; a Muslim or a Christian, moron doctrine. No! It has a national affiliation. All Egyptians are gathered in the crucible of patriotism in defense of their homeland. Similarly, our Libyan brothers and sons sent to Egypt, will be trained in the same way that they love and fear for Libya.
We should give an opportunity for political solutions and negotiations through the international community; the current status of political division and the continuation of wars will ultimately lead to dire consequences. It is imperative to focus on the path of development and construction, notably that the Libyan people are suffering from the scourge of wars over the past years.
I assure you that both the Egyptian and Libyan positions are identical and firm, rejecting foreign interventions in Libya. Whereas, such intervened powers have specific agendas scheming at striking stability in Libya, and coveting the wealth and resources of the Libyan people. I further stress that we will only be satisfied with Libya's political, social, security, and military stability.
The outlined “Red lines” are mainly considered a call for peace and for ending the struggle in Libya. However, we will not stand idle against any movements that threaten our strategic national security on our western borders, especially in light of the recent increasing militarization in the vicinity of Sirte.
I hope that our Libyan brothers in the west understand this point, give an opportunity for peace and prevent the escalation of the situation, as we will not stand idle against any violation for this. I reiterate once again: “Let us comply with this line and start a political path. Egypt said its word after a six-year silence; we previously left the Libyans to handle their affairs as they wish; however, we will not allow the Eastern region to be a destabilized one anymore.”
As I said before while inspecting the troops in the Western Military Zone, Egypt has the strongest army in the region and in Africa. Thus, let me say that despite Egypt’s ability to change the military scene quickly and decisively, if we desire; however, our army is rational and do not assault or invade foreign territories. Hence, if we need to take such step, we should address the Egyptian Parliament to authorize our movement in this regard.
Let me digress in this issue: “Despite of Egypt’s ability to rapidly and decisively change the military scene; if we desire; however, it always insists on the peaceful solution through pushing the Libyan parties for negotiations.”
I assure you that there is no hostile Egyptian stance against the Western Zone government or the people of Tripoli. We have previously hosted the Western Zone leaders many times in Egypt to reach a common understanding formula between the two parties of the Libyan conflict. After Cairo Declaration Initiative, all developments stressed that:
No one of the conflict parties would have solely the political will, the possibility to ceasefire or the ability to resume the political process. This was as a result of the falling of one of the parties under the domination of foreign powers scheming to achieve their aims and interests in the region, regardless of the national interests, the affiliation, and the Arab and Islamic identity of the Libyan people.
The foreign influence on the Libyan affair has increased. The process of transferring the Syrian mercenaries and volunteers has been continued to dominate the Libyan people’s wealth especially from oil and to form a staging base for threatening neighboring countries.
This issue has represented a direct and powerful threat, not only to the Egyptian and Libyan national security but also to the Arab, regional and international concerns. This entails decisive countermeasures to be undertaken to the thwartsuchschemes.
As a result, we have welcomed the statement of our Libyan brethren delivered in their House of Representatives on July 13, 2020.It was expressive, understanding and strongly aware of the risks and threats that our people has been entitled to vigorously and resolutely confront them. Notably, the role played by the international community meantime is actually limited, so we are waiting for its efforts in defending and protecting our identity, dignity and wealth.
If our brothers in the Libyan House of Representatives, the only legislative authority elected by the people, ask the Egyptian army to intervene, as appropriate, to protect the Libyan sovereignty and to secure the national security interests for both countries, your Egyptian brothers are ready to take all measures to attain the mutual interests in facing these threats.
I reiterate that Egypt’s success, in cooperation with the Libyan army, or any fraternal or brethren country in realizing the targeted goals, will not be accomplished without concerted efforts, solidarity and full cooperation with the Libyan tribes. These tribes play a vital and crucial role, which first includes coherence and unity among Libyan national powers to provide military and political decision-support as well as to foil any schemes for multi-dimension psychological operations. Additionally, the Libyan tribes should provide the troops with the necessary equipment and should have an extended outreached role to address the world public opinion to support Egypt's intervention in Libyan affairs and to reject the proliferation of the militias.
I previously said, in Sidi Barani, that in case that Egyptian forces enter Libya, the tribal chieftains would be on the head of the troops “under the Libyan flag”.
It is necessary to halt transporting mercenaries and terrorists. Moreover, it is important to compel the refused parties to ceasefire and to return to the political solution.
Last June, in our meeting in Sidi Barani, I asserted that Egypt will offer full support for the Libyan brothers to protect our common security, and that the Egyptian military forces will be behind LNA, and the long-standing historic Libyan tribes representing Arab resistant against occupation.
I would like to thank you all for attentive listening.