Egypt, Greece, and Cyprus called for the complete withdrawal of all foreign and mercenary forces from Libya

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In a joint statement released Friday, the foreign ministers of Egypt, Greece, and Cyprus called for compliance with the UN arms embargo and the complete withdrawal of all foreign and mercenary forces from Libya. The request came a day after the Philia Forum between the heads of diplomacy of Greece, Cyprus, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, in Athens.

“We stressed the need for effective implementation of the ceasefire agreement, compliance with the United Nations arms embargo, and the complete withdrawal of all foreign and mercenary forces from the country,” the joint statement read.The three countries also hailed the recent formation of a transitional executive authority in Libya as an “important milestone in the political process”.

The ministers of Cyprus, Egypt, and Greece, based on previous consultations and regular coordination, met in Athens to continue dialogue and cooperation to further strengthen their political and economic engagement, discuss regional challenges, send a clear and positive message that the region has the potential to be transformed into an area of peace, stability and prosperity.

“We concluded that the outcome of this cooperation scheme serves the common interest of our countries to promote prosperity in the region, having laid the foundations for a positive agenda, and we have expressed our commitment to intensify coordination to explore opportunities of cooperation.” The statement continued, welcoming the preparations made for the establishment of the Nicosia-based Secretariat for Trilateral Mechanisms, operational in early spring 2021.

The three countries agreed that, although Covid-19 is an unprecedented challenge, results-oriented exchanges, joint initiatives, and actions in the fields of energy, innovation, the digital economy, civil protection, and contacts among people should be further strengthened.

On the Cyprus issue, the ministers of Greece, Cyprus, and Egypt expressed their support for the UN Secretary-General’s efforts to resume a results-oriented negotiation process under his auspices which will lead to a comprehensive solution based on a bizonal and bi-community federation, following international law and the relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council.

They also stressed the importance of the respect of sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdiction that each state has over its maritime areas under international law, denouncing all activities that violate international law, referring to Turkey.Regarding the Middle East Peace Process, they stressed that the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on the two-state solution is a prerequisite for global peace and stability in the region, as well as the importance of guaranteeing a state independent and viable Palestinian based on the lines of June 4, 1967, living side by side in peace and security with Israel.

They welcomed the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) agreement on a unified transitional executive authority for Libya, recognizing it as an important milestone in the political process and a significant step towards securing credible and inclusive elections that will be held on December 24, 2021.

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