The U.N. envoy to Libya is urging its parliament to endorse a unity government in order to bring the country together and combat an increasingly powerful Islamic State affiliate.

Martin Kobler told The Associated Press in Cairo on Wednesday that "every day lost in political dialogue is a day of gain of Daesh," referring to the extremist group by its Arabic acronym.

Libya's internationally recognized government and parliament has convened in the far east since 2014, when Islamist-allied militias seized the capital, Tripoli, and established a rival authority there. The divisions have allowed IS to expand its footprint in central Libya.

A U.N.-designated council presented a new 18-member Cabinet on Sunday. The internationally-backed House of Representatives must approve the government.