The Libyan route might be one of the EU’s most pressing issues, but luckily, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, is on it:
“We also took a decision (sic) to introduce restrictions today, from today onwards on the export and supply to Libya of the inflatable boats and motors – as you know this (sic) are devices that are used by traffickers for their smuggling activities. So this decision we have taken on the European Union level will help making (sic) their businesses and their lives a bit more complicated. Even more, actually, I would say.“
On 17 July, Mogherini held a press conference after the EU Foreign Affair Council on Libya. The Council concluded (PDF) the EU will remain fully committed to an inclusive, inter-Libyan political process. Furthermore, it welcomes the appointment of Ghassan Salamé by the UN, to serve as the new Special Representative. The EU is committed to a close cooperation with the UN support mission (UNSMIL) in Libya, encouraging the UN to enhance its efforts in stabilising Libya.
The EU also stresses its firm support to what it regards as the sole legitimate government authorities in Libya. In line with this, the EU commends that:
“ongoing efforts to bridge political differences and calls for the House of Representatives and the High Council of State to take forward consultations on limited amendments to the LPA, which remains the abiding framework for a solution to Libya’s crisis, to make it more inclusive and to fully implement it.“
The EU also feels it has to underscore the importance of the participation of women, civil society and local actors in the political process. It also urges the Constitution Drafting Assembly (CDA) to complete its works as soon as possible, in order for a new Constitution to be approved and submitted to a referendum, as envisaged by the Libyan Political Agreement. And if you think the EU calling for a referendum is ironic…
In view of the recent violence threatening Libya’s stability, the document says that the EU believes that there is no solution to the crisis “through the use of force“. Instead the EU:
“condemns inflammatory rhetoric and the attacks that led to the loss of life in the past few months. The EU calls on all armed groups to refrain from violence, to commit to demobilisation and to recognize the authorities entrusted by the LPA as the only ones having the right to control Libya’s defence and security forces.“
Mind you, at the very same time, it condemns
“the repeated violations of the UN arms embargo and urges all members of the international community to fully respect international legal order, UNSC resolutions and Libya’s territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence and to jointly support the UN mediation.“
This was a Council on the future of Libya and therefore on human trafficking, one of the most divisive and serious problems the EU faces today. And the highest level of EU politics chose to not mention the European Observatory on Migrant Smuggling and Human Trafficking. Only mention EUNAVFOR MED operation ‘Sophia’ when the High Representative was questioned on it. Instead, Mogherini presented a plan to stop the export of inflatable boats and motors. A plan that’s dead in the water from the start.
— EU External Action (@eu_eeas) July 17, 2017