United Nations envoy for Libya Abdoulaye Bathily resigned on Tuesday April 16, saying the UN cannot “act successfully” to support the political process in the face of leaders who place “their personal interests above the needs of the country “.

“I have presented my resignation to the Secretary General” of the UN Antonio Guterres, declared the Senegalese diplomat to the press after a meeting of the Security Council where he painted a very dark picture of the situation in Libya, torn by civil war since 2011. The resignation was “accepted,” said the secretary general’s spokesperson.

The United Nations mission in Libya (Manul) “has made a lot of efforts over the last eighteen months under my leadership”, but “in recent months, the situation has deteriorated”, described Abdoulaye Bathily, denouncing “the lack of political will and good faith of the Libyan leaders who are happy with the current impasse”.

“It’s very sad, because in Libya today, most of the population wants to get out of this mess. » But “in these circumstances, there is no way for the UN to act successfully”, he judged, seeing “no room for a political solution”. During the Council meeting, he announced the postponement of the national inter-Libyan reconciliation conference scheduled for April 28, to an unspecified date.

“Delaying maneuvers and tactics”

“It is discouraging to see individuals in a position to be able to put their personal interests above the needs of their country,” he said, sharing his “deep sense of disappointment.” “The selfish determination of the current leaders to maintain the status quo through delaying maneuvers and tactics, at the expense of the Libyan people, must stop,” he argued. He particularly regretted that his attempts to address the concerns of various parties had been met with “stubborn resistance, unreasonable expectations and indifference to the interests of the people.”

Libya has been plunged into political and security chaos since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime in 2011 following a popular revolt supported by NATO. Undermined by fratricidal violence and divisions, the country is governed by two rival executives. One in Tripoli (West) is led by Abdelhamid Dbeibah and recognized by the UN, the other in the East, is embodied by Parliament and affiliated with the camp of Marshal Haftar, whose stronghold is in Benghazi.

Abdoulaye Bathily, the ninth UN envoy since 2011, was appointed in September 2022 after months of the post being vacant following the abrupt resignation of his predecessor Jan Kubis in November 2021. The Security Council, whose approval is necessary, had rejected several proposals from Antonio Guterres before finally accepting the Senegalese diplomat, about whom the Tripoli government had however since then expressed “reservations”.