Moving Beyond Libya’s Political Deadlock: What Role for the EU?

The stabilization of Libya, a priority for the European Union, will require a careful assessment of developments on the ground and further engagement in order to move beyond the current political deadlock in the country. Libya has recently experienced a renewal of violence between the armed militias in and around Tripoli—as well as continued attacks by Daesh and its affiliates—while the economic situation continues to deteriorate. This context has undermined prospects for holding national elections in December as envisaged at the Paris Summit on Libya in May 2018. 

While the EU supports the UN-led process dedicated to the political reconciliation, stabilization, and economic recovery of the country, the initiatives of key EU member states including Italy and France have exposed differences in their approaches to Libya’s stabilization. Given the link between the security situation in Libya and migrant arrivals to Europe, the renewed violence in the country creates more uncertainty and carries far-reaching implications for European politics.

This event will assess the current situation in Libya, explore future scenarios concerning security and political arrangements, and evaluate how to shape a more coherent, effective, and shared approach at the EU level to address the situation in the country. The first of two panel discussions will focus on the impact of Libya’s war economy on the security situation in the country, and the second will assess the EU response to the Libyan crisis.


  • Hala Bugaighis is the co-founder of Jusoor.
  • Srdjan Cvijic (moderator) is a senior policy analyst at the Open Society European Policy Institute.
  • Tim Eaton is the research fellow with the Middle East and North Africa Program at Chatham House.
  • Francesca Fabbri (moderator) is a policy analyst at the European Policy Centre.
  • Mary Fitzgerald is a researcher and journalist specializing in Libya.
  • Lorenzo Kluzer is the head of the Libya Desk at the European External Action Service.
  • Giulia Laganà is the senior EU migration and asylum analyst at the Open Society European Policy Institute.
  • Tobias Schumacher is a professor and the chairholder of the European Neighbourhood Policy Chair at the College of Europe.
  • Francesco Strazzari is a professor at the Sant’Anna Scuola Universitaria Superiore di Pisa.
  • Stephanie T. Williams is the deputy special representative for political affairs in Libya at the United Nations Support Mission in Libya.