South Africa and Germany, as heads of continental bodies the African Union and European Union have expressed an intent to collaborate on peace solutions in Libya.
This as South Africa prepares to assume chairmanship of the AU under the theme of “Silencing the Guns by 2020”.
South Africa will assume chairmanship at the meeting of Heads of State and Government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for the 33rd Ordinary Session of the AU assembly – taking place from 8 – 9 February 2020. Germany will assume Presidency of the EU in July 2020.
The heads of state discussed the need for co-operation on lasting peace solutions in the interests of Libya.
The remarks come weeks after Merkel convened a Berlin Conference on Libya. The conference came out in support of peace, which Merkel said has to be inclusive to address the multi-layered conflict.
“We have to see to it that all people who can contribute to resolving the conflict in Libya do so, the Libya conflict is not just an African problem,” Merkel said.
She said it was apparent collaboration is essential to resolving the conflict, adding this cannot be done without African expertise.
“We have seen without the African wisdom and expert knowledge we know Libya today is not owned by Libyans but by outside powers. Working in their interest will be worth our while,” she said.
President Ramaphosa as AU incoming chair agreed with Merkel, adding while Africa would like to see African solutions to African problems it is cognisant of the complexity of the Libyan conflict.
“As Africa, we would like to see African solutions to African problems but the Libya conflict is unique as it involves many other people. We would like to see our partners on board to resolve this,” said the President.
On Brexit, Merkel said it was still early days for the EU and effects are yet to be felt in the strategic bloc.
“Right now we are in a period of transition so not much has changed. Britain will have to tell us how it envisages its role in the world. We would like to continue to maintain friendship with Britain,” she said.