ALEXANDRIA, Egypt – Libya's Parliament speaker in the east says no peace deal can be reached right now between rival factions in his country because the capital, Tripoli, has been "kidnapped" by armed groups.
Aguila Saleh, speaker of the Tobruk-based House of Representatives, tells The Associated Press on Wednesday in Alexandria, Egypt, that the self-styled Libyan National Army supporting the rival government in the east has stepped in to "liberate" Tripoli, the seat of the U.N.-backed government .
LNA forces, led by Khalifa Hifter, launched a major military offensive earlier this month aimed at capturing Tripoli, clashing with rival militias that support the U.N.-backed government.
Saleh says it would be impossible to hold next week's U.N.-planned peace conference.
He says that the Parliament and the LNA are "convinced that an agreement cannot be carried out ... as these groups mess with the capital."