After months of delays to the voting process, Libya’s parliament has refused to endorse the Government of National Accord (GNA) appointed as part of the UN-brokered peace deal signed in December. The vote in the Tobruk-based House of Representatives (HOR), the country’s internationally recognized parliament, was a resounding declaration of no confidence in the GNA. Of the 101 members who participated in the vote on 22 August, 61 voted against the GNA, with only one in favor and 39 abstentions. The HOR called for the Presidency Council (PC), which heads the GNA, to appoint a slimmed-down cabinet within 10 days, threatening to withdraw its support completely from the unity government if this does not happen.

HOR members sympathetic to the Tripoli-based GNA claim that the vote was not on the parliamentary agenda and that it was smuggled through by opponents to the unity government process. The session was chaired by HOR speaker Ageela Saleh, a supporter of the commander in chief of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Khalifa Haftar, who has been consistently opposed to the unity government. The HOR demanded that the number of cabinet posts be reduced to no more than 12, from the 18 presented by the PC. (CONTINUED - 1122 WORDS)