Greek Prime Minister To Visit Libya, Reopen Embassy Next Week

Greek Prime Minister to Visit Libya, Reopen Embassy Next Week

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will visit Libya on Tuesday for talks with the new leadership of the North African country, Greek government spokeswoman Aristotelia Peloni said on Thursday, adding that the head of cabinet will also reopen the Greek embassy

ATHENS (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 01st April, 2021) Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will visit Libya on Tuesday for talks with the new leadership of the North African country, Greek government spokeswoman Aristotelia Peloni said on Thursday, adding that the head of cabinet will also reopen the Greek embassy.

Earlier in the day, media reported that Mitsotakis was scheduled to visit Libya next week with the aim of restoring relations between Athens and Tripoli, safeguard Greece's geostrategic interests and persuade Libya to annul the Turkish-Libyan memorandum on the delimitation of maritime zones.

"On Tuesday, April 6, the prime minister accompanied by foreign minister [Nikos Dendias] will visit Libya, where he will meet the chairman of the Presidential Council Mohammad Menfi and Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah. The prime minister's visit will also mean the immediate resumption of the work of our embassy in Tripoli," Peloni said at a briefing.

Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexandros Papaioannou previously said that the Greek embassy would resume work in the coming days with the aim of both preparing the visit and strengthening bilateral ties.

On November 27, 2019, Ankara and the internationally recognized Libyan government in Tripoli signed the memorandum on maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean Sea, triggering a strong backlash among some countries, including Greece, Cyprus and Egypt.

The three countries said the pact infringed upon their sovereignty.

On November 29, Greek Foreign Minister Dendias summoned then Libyan ambassador to Athens, Mohamed al-Menfi, and asked him to disclose the memorandum's text before December 6 or face expulsion as he would be declared persona non grata. The ambassador was later declared a persona non grata by Greece and given 72 hours to leave the country.

Since the overthrow and assassination of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, Libya has been split between two rival governments. The administrations known as the Government of National Accord (GNA) and the Libyan National Army (LNA) have been in control of the country's west and east, respectively.

In February, the Swiss-hosted Libya Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) elected an interim caretaker unity authority to take charge until a national general election scheduled for December 24. The LPDF picked Mohammad Younes Menfi, a former GNA ambassador in Greece, as the new head of the Presidential Council, while Mossa Al-Koni, a representative of Libya's south, and Abdullah Hussein Al-Lafi, a representative of the west, became his deputies. Abdul Hamid Dbeibah was elected prime minister.