The chairman of Libya’s High Council of State on Saturday welcomed an agreement to conduct presidential and parliamentary elections in the country by the end of 2021.

“We are keen on taking Libya to inspired-for instability after all these crises and suffering,” Khalid al-Mishri said in a statement on Facebook.

He suggested holding a referendum on a new constitution on Feb. 17 before the elections.

On Friday, Stephanie Williams, the head of the UN Support Mission in Libya, announced that the Libyan warring sides agreed to hold elections on Dec. 24, 2021.

Williams said the Libyan rivals agreed to establish a new Presidential Council and an executive body to manage the transition period and hold national elections.

On Monday, the intra-Libyan direct dialogue kicked off in Tunisia under the UN supervision, with representatives from the country’s three main regions; Tripolitania (west), Barqa (east) and Fezzan (south).

Libya has been torn by civil war since the ouster of late ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

The Government of National Accord was founded in 2015 under a UN-led agreement, but efforts for a long-term political settlement failed due to a military offensive by forces loyal to warlord Khalifa Haftar.

The UN recognizes Fayez al-Sarraj’s government as the country’s legitimate authority, as Tripoli has battled Haftar’s militias since April 2019 in a conflict that has claimed thousands of lives.

*Ahmed Asmar in Ankara contributed to this report

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