This week, the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) process commenced in Geneva with the assumption that Libya’s new executive authority will be announced by the end of this week.
On 27 January, Salah al-Din Namroush, the Minister of Defence in the GNA, announced that 1,300 soldiers have received military training with Turkish forces in Libya under the security agreement between the GNA and Turkey.
On 28 January, The Times reported that a Russian air defence missile system was secretly flown from Zuwwara to a US air base in Germany. According to The Times, the covert operation was ordered due to concerns that the Pantsir S-1 missile battery could be held by a militia or arms smugglers. The missile system was sold by Russia to the UAE, who transferred it to forces aligned with the commander of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Khalifa Haftar. It was captured from the LNA in May 2020 and transferred to Zawiyya where it was seized by the militia commander Mohamed Bahroun, aka al-Far, ‘the Rat’.
On 28 January, the Acting Head of United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), Stephanie Williams, called on the UN Security Council to pass a resolution to dissolve all parallel executive entities in Libya to support the new unified executive that emerges from the UN LPDF process. On 1 February, the LPDF opened in Geneva. The LPDF will vote on a three-man Presidential Council and the next Prime Minister for Libya. Together, the Presidential Council and the Prime Minister are intended to form a new transitional executive authority for Libya until national elections are held on 24 December 2021. The 21 candidates for Prime Minister include the GNA Deputy Prime Minister Ahmed Maiteeq and GNA Minister of Interior Fathi Bashaagha.