With the approaching decision-making date in choosing the new executive powers, as decided by the roadmap adopted by the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum held in Tunis in November, a severe conflict emerged between the Speaker of the Tobruk Parliament, Aqila Saleh and Khalifa Haftar, over who would represent Barqa in these prospective authorities.
Haftar’s supporters gathered in Benghazi, the so-called “Forum of Cyrenaica.” To cut off the way for Agila Saleh’s candidacy for the presidency of the new Presidential Council, as the final statement of the forum on the 27th of this month affirmed support for what was described as the “National Army” and not to authorize any person or party representing the eastern region in the political dialogue in the sense of “not delegating Aqila Saleh.”
The statement condemned the Central Bank of Libya, describing its policies as “failed”, including the approval of the recent exchange rate, and demanded that the board of directors of the Central Bank be changed and reformed.
Aqila rallying his supporters
These moves came as a reaction to previous tribal meetings in the Eastern Province. To recommend Agila Saleh, who is supported by Egypt, according to many observers, on the 23rd of this month, in the city of Al-Qubbah, Saleh met with a number of sheikhs and notables from the committee supervising the “Al-Abyar II” forum who according to a statement issued by the Tobruk Parliament “Expressed their appreciation and support for his efforts and initiative to end the Libyan crisis.
The first Al-Abyaar Forum, held on the 12th of this month, called for support of Aqila Saleh’s initiative and his support as Speaker of Parliament, and the same was stated in the final statement of the Forum of Tribes and components of Barqa, which was held on the 6th of this month in Derna.
This struggle over the representation of the eastern region is not born today, as the dispute between them reached a complete breaking point after Haftar’s defeat on the walls of Tripoli, and Haftar’s announcement of his coup against the House of Representatives.
On April 27, Haftar announced his acceptance of the people’s mandate to rule the country, after calling on his supporters on the 23rd of the same month to go out to the squares, for the sake of authorizing what he called the competent institution to lead the country, and to bring down the Presidency Council and the Skhirat Agreement.
Aqila rejects the coup
In response to Haftar’s move to delegate himself, Aqila Saleh appeared on the 30th of last April in videos during a gathering of his tribe criticizing what he called Haftar’s obstinacy and recklessness. Because of his insistence to continue the war despite the heavy losses.
Aqila added that Haftar does not have authority so he can requests a mandate and expressed his surprise that some people rush to delegate Haftar, stressing that the mandate is mainly in the authority that you possess, denouncing some of the words that Haftar used in announcing his mandate, including the word drop, noting that when you say : “You dropped the political agreement, this means your recognition of it in recent years,” warning of the danger of dropping the parliament; Because they will reconvene in Tripoli.
Al-Sisi brought them together
Haftar and Saleh did not meet until after Haftar’s militia withdrew from the Western region, and with the intervention of Egypt, which brought them together in Cairo, where the Egyptian presidency said on June 6, that a meeting brought together Egyptian President Abdulfattah Al-Sisi with Aqila Saleh, and Khalifa Haftar at the Federal Palace in Cairo, to discuss the implications of the current Libyan situation on the regional and international environment.
Haftar uses bullying
With the arrival of the political dialogue, its last stage, the intensity of the dispute appeared between Haftar and Aqila, as Saddam Haftar sent a group of his followers on December 6 with the aim of thwarting the conference held to support Aqila Saleh at the Faculty of Economics in Benghazi, and they threatened the conference organizers with persecution; Because they managed to organize it without referring to what is known as the “General Command”, as they described it.
Haftar marginalizes Aqila
The intensity of the disagreement between them also appeared in the failure to invite Aqila to attend Haftar’s welcome of the Italian Prime Minister in Benghazi on the 17th of this month, and the release of the arrested fishermen without returning to him, in addition to not inviting him to attend the military parade marking the anniversary of Libya’s independence day in Benghazi, which Haftar was keen on to appear in it as the first and most powerful man among the multitudes of his military militias.