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AP Interview: New Libya FM favors political solution in Tripoli, military solution in Benghazi

  • The streets remain empty as fighting raged  between Islamist militias and forces loyal to Libya's elected government in Benghazi, Libya on Friday, Oct. 17, 2014.  The latest cycle of violence follows more than two years of dashed hopes and failed attempts by civilians to stand up to the Islamist militias. Activists, judges, journalists, policemen and army officers have been gunned down in a series of assassinations carried out by assailants who have not been caught. As the central government flounders, hard-line Islamists act with impunity.    (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)

    The streets remain empty as fighting raged between Islamist militias and forces loyal to Libya's elected government in Benghazi, Libya on Friday, Oct. 17, 2014. The latest cycle of violence follows more than two years of dashed hopes and failed attempts by civilians to stand up to the Islamist militias. Activists, judges, journalists, policemen and army officers have been gunned down in a series of assassinations carried out by assailants who have not been caught. As the central government flounders, hard-line Islamists act with impunity. (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)  (The Associated Press)

  • A man with an armed group of Libyan people holds a weapon to defend their local area from Islamic militias in Benghazi, Libya, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. Mohamed Dayri, Libya's newly appointed foreign minister, said Thursday that he hopes to see a negotiated solution to the standoff in the capital, Tripoli, where Islamist-allied militias have taken over the city and forced out the elected lawmakers. However, the minister was less optimistic on Benghazi, where a different set of Islamist militias have taken control since August. (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)

    A man with an armed group of Libyan people holds a weapon to defend their local area from Islamic militias in Benghazi, Libya, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. Mohamed Dayri, Libya's newly appointed foreign minister, said Thursday that he hopes to see a negotiated solution to the standoff in the capital, Tripoli, where Islamist-allied militias have taken over the city and forced out the elected lawmakers. However, the minister was less optimistic on Benghazi, where a different set of Islamist militias have taken control since August. (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)  (The Associated Press)

  • Men with an armed group of Libyan people hold weapons to defend their local area from Islamic militias in Benghazi, Libya, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. Mohamed Dayri, Libya's newly appointed foreign minister, said Thursday that he hopes to see a negotiated solution to the standoff in the capital, Tripoli, where Islamist-allied militias have taken over the city and forced out the elected lawmakers. However, the minister was less optimistic on Benghazi, where a different set of Islamist militias have taken control since August. (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)

    Men with an armed group of Libyan people hold weapons to defend their local area from Islamic militias in Benghazi, Libya, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. Mohamed Dayri, Libya's newly appointed foreign minister, said Thursday that he hopes to see a negotiated solution to the standoff in the capital, Tripoli, where Islamist-allied militias have taken over the city and forced out the elected lawmakers. However, the minister was less optimistic on Benghazi, where a different set of Islamist militias have taken control since August. (AP Photo/Mohammed Elsheiky)  (The Associated Press)

Libya's newly appointed foreign minister says he hopes negotiations could resolve the standoff in Tripoli, where Islamist militias have taken over the capital and forced out elected lawmakers.

Foreign Minister Mohamed Dayri, who assumed his post in late September, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he hopes that negotiations mediated by the United Nations would allow his government to return to the capital.

Dayri says that he is "seeking a settlement" and that the "political track should be enough to bring us back to Tripoli."

At the same time, the minister was not so optimistic about Benghazi, where battles are raging between Islamist militiamen who have controlled the eastern city since August and army troops trying to retake it.

He says Benghazi will have to be retaken by force.