Rome’s Fight for Libyan Grand Bargain

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Series Title
Series Details May 2016
Publication Date 30/05/2016
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Libya has always been among Italy’s priorities in foreign policy, if not the main item on the country’s agenda.

Gentiloni’s surprise visit, on 12 April of this year, aims to consolidate Italy’s role in the crisis in Libya and to pledge the country’s commitment to new efforts to stabilize the country politically, economically and from a humanitarian standpoint.

The Italian position is rooted in two realistic considerations: 1) a peaceful and long-lasting future for Libya can be envisaged only by way of a political agreement among the parties, and not as a result of an external military action that would likely generate additional unrest. 2) Italy’s political, economic-commercial and energy stakes in Libya (witness the recent investments by ENI in the country) are concentrated in Tripolitania. Here, the Mediterranean coast is a main departure point for migrants to Italy. It is therefore in Italy’s best interest to maintain good relations with those in control of this part of the country by acting as a mediator and trying to facilitate a recomposition of the political and military scenario in Libya.

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ISPI: Commentary: Rome’s Fight for Libyan Grand Bargain [PDF]

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