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CIA chief makes rare visit to Libya

US Central Intelligence
Agency (CIA) chief William Burns made a rare trip to Libya, meeting Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah in
Tripoli, the Libyan government has said.

Libya’s Government of National Unity announced the visit
on its Facebook page on Thursday, posting a picture of Burns and Dbeibah

“During the meeting, Burns emphasized the need to develop economic and security cooperation between the two countries, citing the stability and growth that Libya has seen in recent times,” the statement said.

The CIA, which does not regularly announce such visits,
declined to comment.

“The Prime Minister [Dbeibah] affirmed that the goal is to stabilise our country and support it internationally to reach the elections,” it added. 

Libya has had little peace since the uprising in
2011, and the country split in 2014 between warring eastern and
western factions, culminating in Haftar launching a doomed
assault on Tripoli in 2019.

Government of National Unity was formed through a UN-backed
process in 2021 as part of a peace plan, but his administration
is challenged by the factions in the

The United States has previously said it is worried about
the role played by Russia in Libya’s conflict and fears
continued instability in the OPEC member could impact the global
energy supply.

READ MORE: UN calls on Libyan leaders to end transitional period

Libya’s civil war

France, Russia and some Gulf nations backed warlord Haftar’s fighters during the war in 2019-2020,
with the Russian private military contractor Wagner deploying up
to 1,200 troops in Libya, according to a 2020 report by UN

Washington is also seeking more Libyan suspects in the 1988
bombing of a Pan-Am airliner over Lockerbie in Scotland after
last month’s transfer from Libya to the United States of a
former Libyan intelligence officer accused of making the bomb
that took down the plane.

READ MORE: ICC seeks arrest warrants for war crimes in Libya, unearths new evidence

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