Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni visited Tripoli today, where he met Prime Minister Fayed al-Sarraj in the Bu Setta naval base.
Minister Gentiloni was the first foreign top government official to visit the Libyan capital since the installation of the national unity government and he was greeted by Deputy Prime Minister Meitig at his arrival at the military airport of Mitiga.
With his visit, Minister Gentiloni transmitted Italy’s full support to the Libyan Government of National Accord, saying that “the main message that Italy has wanted to give to Libya’s Presidential Council is a message of support on a political, humanitarian and economic level”.
The Italian Foreign Minister conveyed another important message to the Libyans: the main role in the fight against terrorism in Libya is to be played by the Libyans. Mr Gentiloni confirmed that Italy, together with the international community, is ready to cooperate and make a contribution but combating terrorism is a task to be primarily shouldered by the Libyans: “The Libyans and the Government of National Accord must lead the struggle against ISIS in the Country,” he said.
The establishment of a national unity government and of institutions built on unanimous consent is the first fundamental step in laying the ground for a future of stability. Mr Gentiloni said: “In order to effectively fight the terrorism of ISIS and human trafficking it is compelling that Libya find stability and peace. In this sense, the Presidential Council led by Fayed al-Sarraj is moving in the right direction.”
During his visit, Minister Gentiloni announced that Italy delivered humanitarian aid to Libya with a C-130 today, including health kits for the hospital in Tripoli. Additional aid will soon also be dispatched to Benghazi.
On thanking the Italian Foreign Minister for his visit to Tripoli, Prime Minister-designate Fayed al-Sarraj said that “with Italy there is a deep-rooted relationship that we intend to strengthen on the front of combating illegal immigration and terrorism.”