In a landmark moment for the UN-led Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF), discussions in Geneva did indeed turn to select a new interim unity government, a government of technocrats, as a short-term solution to establish the necessary conditions for scheduled elections announced for 24 December 2021. Delegates elected on 5 February 2021 were Abdul Hamid Mohammed Dbeibah, a businessman from Misrata, as Prime Minister of the new Government of National Unity (GNU), and Mohamed Younes Menfi, a former ambassador to Greece, to the head of the Presidency Council.
The establishment of a new government represents a new chapter in Libya’s path towards a sustainable political settlement. Early signs for the government’s success are encouraging; the eastern House of Representatives (HoR) voted on 10 March to endorse the GNU, which overcomes a key stumbling block regarding political legitimacy through buy-in from political players from all sides of the Libyan spectrum. However, success is not a foregone conclusion with many outstanding issues and priorities that need to be addressed as soon as possible.