Libyan prime minister elect Abdul Dabaiba has asked the Maltese government to offer it more support as it tries to transition back to peace. 

In a statement, Foreign Affairs Minister Evarist Bartolo on Wednesday said he had held positive talks with Dabaiba who is set to take over the helm of the UN-backed government of national unity in Tripoli later this month. 

The two discussed a number of issues, from resumption of flights between Libya and the island, to addressing bottlenecks for Libyans seeking visas or trying to open bank accounts in Malta. 

On Tuesday Times of Malta reported how Dabaiba was briefly filmed addressing Libyan dignitaries saying he would only meet with Prime Minister Robert Abela when the proper respect was shown to the Libyan people. 

Libyan passport holders, he said, were not being treated with respect. 

After footage of the speech was published, the Maltese government began a diplomatic effort to address tensions. 

In his statement, Bartolo said Malta will also be addressing problems regarding visas and residence permits to ensure that undue delays and hardships for Libyans will be avoided.
Bartolo said Dabaiba had also mentioned the need for flights between Libya and Malta to resume. This issue is being addressed and Malta will be guided by the EU authorities, Bartolo added.
The minister said Dabaiba had acknowledged the long-standing positive relationship Malta and Libya enjoy. 

The Maltese people are regarded as friends by the Libyan community, Bartolo said. 

“At this crucial time, however, he expressed hope that Malta will offer more support,” the minister said. 
Work on opening a Maltese Consulate in Tripoli as well as an embassy in Libya is understood to be at an advanced stage. 

Bartolo said the Maltese representative offices in the North African state should be fully functioning in the coming weeks.
Bartolo and the designate Prime Minister of Libya discussed the steps that need to be taken to facilitate the opening of bank accounts for Libyans in Malta, provided that all international financial regulations are observed. 

On a large stash of Libyan dinars held by Malta, Bartolo explained that Malta would be willing to hand them over once the United Nations gives its approval and the money goes to a united financial institution for the benefit of all Libyans.
Bartolo also explained how Malta is working with the UN’s Special Mission in Libya and the EU to have a united Libya run by Libyans in peace and prosperity.

Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.

Support Us