As previously reported in the Libyan media, the UN Special Envoy to Libya, Bernardino Leon, will be replaced by Martin Kobler, a German diplomat fluent in Arabic with experience in the Middle East and Africa. A handover date has yet to be confirmed.
In an effort to move the unity government talks forward the EU has threatened sanctions. The Libyans have countered this by threatening to send more migrants to Europe across the Mediterranean.
On a more positive note Bloomberg reported a rise in Libyan Oil Production by 80,000bpd in October taking total production to an estimated 430,000bpd. Unfortunately this will be reduced again in November as Zueitina port has been closed due to security issues.
The Saudi coalition have suggested that their offensive might be coming to a close. This is in recognition of stiff resistance by the Houthis in the highland areas and their apparent willingness to talk is changing the signals coming from Riyadh.
These issues are being compounded by an increasingly tough security situation within Aden as local jihadis and militants conduct attacks against military positions and government buildings.
While the end of the offensive may spell an end to airstrikes, we believe the Hodeidha port blockade is likely to continue. The control over food and especially fuel is far more effective weapon than air strikes and likely to be the reason why the Houthis and General Saleh are more willing to discuss peace terms.
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