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Rival Libyan leaders agree to form unified government

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The leaders of Libya’s two rival governments have agreed to form a single unified government, signalling progress in ending a political stalemate that has persisted for more than a decade.

In a joint statement on Sunday, the leaders said they had agreed on the “necessity” of forming a new unified government that would supervise long-delayed elections and “unify sovereign positions”.

The talks were held in Egypt’s capital, Cairo, and were led by the Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit.

The negotiation involved the president of the Libyan Presidential Council and the head of the High State Council, both based in Tripoli, as well as the speaker of the House of Representatives in the rival Benghazi-based administration.

Libya began to fracture after the fall of long-serving ruler Col Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

The country is split between the internationally recognised government in the west, led by interim Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah in Tripoli, and an administration in the east backed by military strongman Khalifa Haftar in Benghazi.

SOURCE: BBC NEWS