UN Libya envoy's secret role revealed

Bernardino Leon is not apparently 'working on a political plan that will include everybody'

UN Libya envoy's secret role revealed

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Chief of UN Mission in Libya Bernardino Leon has been offered a job by the UAE, the Guardian revealed Wednesday.

The UAE announced that Leon would take over as head of the academy, a state-backed thinktank founded last year to promote the UAE's foreign policy and strategic relations and train its diplomats.

Emails seen by the Guardian show Leon was offered the role of director general in June, a move followed up by talks about increasing his housing allowance a month later.

Leon's new job in the UAE calls into question his impartiality as the UN's chief peacemaker.

The UAE is seen as a strong backer of Tobruk parliament.

Just five months after he was appointed as its mediator in Libya, he sent an email dated 31 December 2014 to the UAE's foreign minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, from his personal account.

In it he tells the UAE that, because of the slow progress of peace talks, Europe and the US were asking for a "plan B… a classical peace conference... This is, in my opinion, a worse option than a political dialogue… because it will treat both sides as equal actors."

Leon goes on to say that his plan is to "break a very dangerous alliance" between the wealthy merchants of Misrata and the rebel forces that keeps the GNC afloat. He says he wants to reinforce the HOR.

He states bluntly that he is "not working on a political plan that will include everybody" and talks of having a strategy to "completely delegitimise" the GNC.

He admits "all my movements and proposals have been consulted with [and in many cases designed by] the HOR and [Libya's ambassador to the UAE] Aref Nayed and [the UAE-based former Libyan prime minister] Mahmud Jibril".

To cover up, Leon asked the Guardian to hold off publishing the story, and offered an interview to explain the situation. Before he could do so, his new job was announced.

Source: The Guardian 

Last Mod: 05 Kasım 2015, 12:50
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