British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson arrived in Tripoli today for a lightning visit taking in talks with Presidency Council (PC) head Faiez Serraj, State Council President Abdulrahman Sewehli and the PC’s foreign minister, Taher Siala. Johnson underlined the process of reconciliation between East and West Libya, started earlier this week, saying that Libya need to “seize the moment”. Both part also talked about development of bilateral relations in various fields (notably in educational field). Johnson himself said that “security, stability and prosperity can only be achieved when the country’s leaders choose to get together and work out a plan for the common benefit of the Libyan people”.
Forces loyal to UN-installed Presidency Council (PC) issued on Wednesday a four-day security alert and intensified their presence in the capital in anticipation of any security breaches. The security alert, started on Wednesday 01, comes just a week after the clashes in Abu Salim neighborhood. Several checkpoints and sand barriers were set up in the areas under the control of PC. While many parts of Tripoli remain under the control of rival groups, the new security alert is said to aim at preventing violations and more clashes in the capital. Former chief of Supreme Security Committee Hashim Bisher, now senior commander within PC forces, said the deployment of troops is a message that Tripoli is united and a step to foil any attempts that undermine security. The deployment of troops was done all of a sudden and without prior announcement, which sparked fear among local residents that a new fighting was about to take place. Head of UNSMIL Martin Kobler also expressed concern about the unannounced deployment and called for calm in Tripoli.