A trilateral meeting over developments in Libya, which was due on Wednesday between the foreign ministers of Italy, Algeria and Egypt was rescheduled at “the nearest possible convenience,” the Italian foreign ministry announced.
The Italian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the meeting was postponed as “result of a pressing engagement that has detained” Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri.
Egypt’s state-run television cited Egyptian foreign ministry spokesman as saying that Shukri “apologised for his inability to travel to Rome due to urgent commitments that emerged in his schedule in the last minute, requiring him to stay in Cairo.”
Shukri said in remarks to journalists yesterday that talks will address efforts of the head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya Bernardino León, who is pushing for a political solution and sponsoring dialogue among different Libyan parties.
Egypt supports the UN political solution in Libya and has been rallying the international community behind lifting an arms embargo, enforced on the Libyan government since 2011.
The Libya crisis has affected several Egyptians, who have been caught up in violence in Egypt’s restive neighbour.
On February 16, Egypt struck militant targets in Libya after the beheading of 21 men, 20 of whom were Egyptians at the hands of men believed to belong to a Libyan division of the Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria.
Around 40,000 Egyptians have since fled Libya by crossing back into Egypt by land and by air flights carrying evacuees to Egypt from Tunisia and sometimes, Algeria.