UNSMIL chief Martin Kobler has praised Algeria’s role in promoting a Libyan political deal .
Speaking in Algiers, Kobler said that Libyans were grateful for the recent tour of their country by Abdelkader Messahel, Algeria’s minister for Maghreb, African Union and Arab Affairs which “gave them hope because the most important thing is not to talk about Libya outside Libya but to go there and speak directly with the people, the politicians and youths.”
Kobler said that Massahel’s visit was the first time any politician from one of Libya’s neighbours had come and travelled around and talked to Libyans.
Messahel told Kobler that he had seen the strong desire for peace among both politicians and people.
“So, the solution must come from Libyans and our role is to support it and assist them in its implementation,” he told a press conference today.
He also said that he was struck by the safety of the cities he visited, including Tripoli.
In Benghazi he had run into players from Tripoli’s Al-Ahly football club who were in the city to play at match against Al-Ahly Benghazi, staged to mark the Benghazi team’s 70th anniversary. Messahel describe the friendly match between the two arch rivals as “symbolic”.