Libya's three-member Presidential Council said in a decree that Foreign Minister Najla al-Mangoush took foreign policy decisions without consulting the council.

Libya's Presidency Council has suspended Foreign Minister Najla al- Mangoush for
Libya's Presidency Council has suspended Foreign Minister Najla al- Mangoush for "administrative violations" and barred her from traveling. (Reuters)

The UN-backed Libyan presidential council has suspended Foreign Minister Najla al Mangoush, accusing her of not coordinating foreign policy with the council.

The three-member body, part of the internationally recognised Government of National Unity which serves in lieu of Libya’s president, also barred Mangoush from traveling abroad pending an investigation into the alleged monopolization of foreign policy, according to a decree published on Saturday by the council.

The presidential council opened an inquiry into alleged "administrative breaches" by Mangoush, spokeswoman Najla Weheba told the Libyan Panorama TV channel on Saturday.  

Libya has been struggling to achieve free and fair elections for the last ten years, suffering war crimes and repeat offensives by warlord Khalifa Haftar, supported by countries such as France, Egypt, UAE and Russia.

The UN-sponsored Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) took place in the first weeks of 2021 to form a transitional government that will take Libya to elections on December 24. 

READ MORE: Free elections or war? What the future holds for Libya 

Elections around the corner

General Haftar has walked away from the negotiating table multiple times in favour of military offensives against the UN-backed GNA. In January 2020, warlord Haftar walked away from a possible resolution to 9 months of fighting held in Moscow. 

After the first Berlin conference held in January of the same year, Haftar nonetheless continued to fortify military positions and ignore UN calls for an end to the violence and withdrawal of foreign mercenaries who form the the bulk of Haftar's militias. Russian Wagner Group mercenaries have played a key role in Haftar's military operations, which seek to capture Tripoli, home to the UN-backed Libyan government.

Whether Haftar will respect Libya’s future elections remains unclear, given his bombing of Libya’s first elected parliament in 2014. 

World leaders will come together in an international summit on Libya to be held in France on November 12 in hopes of finding a solution to a decade of civil war ahead of upcoming elections. 

READ MORE: Libya PM expresses support for landmark December 24 election

Source: AFP