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    US, Key EU Nations Call for Peace in Libya, Warn of Sanctions: US State Department

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    The governments of France, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States have condemned the ongoing violence in Libya and urged all parties involved to stop bloodshed at once, the US Department of State said Saturday in a statement.

    WASHINGTON, October 19 (RIA Novosti) - The governments of France, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States have condemned the ongoing violence in Libya and urged all parties involved to stop bloodshed at once, the US Department of State said Saturday in a statement.

    "We condemn the crimes of Ansar al-Sharia entities, and the ongoing violence in communities across Libya, including Tripoli and its environs. Libya's hard fought freedom is at risk if Libyan and international terrorist groups are allowed to use Libya as a safe haven," the governments said in a joint statement.

    The United States and the three leading European Union powers said they were concerned by Libyan renegade general Khalifa Hifter's attacks in Benghazi.

    "We consider that Libya's security challenges and the fight against terrorist organizations can only be sustainably addressed by regular armed forces under the control of a central authority which is accountable to a democratic and inclusive parliament," they pointed out.

    The five allies said they fully support the work of the United Nations" Special Representative of the Secretary-General and urged all parties to cooperate with his efforts.

    After the Ghadames and Tripoli meetings, negotiations should be pursued with goodwill and adopting inclusive policies, with the aim of finding an agreement on the location of the House of Representatives elected last June 25th and laying the foundations for a Government of National Unity," they said.

    "We stand ready to use individual sanctions in accordance with UNSCR 2174 against those who threaten the peace, stability or security of Libya or obstruct or undermine the political process.

    We agree that there is no military solution to the Libyan crisis. We are particularly dismayed that after meetings in Ghadames and Tripoli, parties have not respected calls for a ceasefire," the statement went on.

    Since Wednesday Benghazi has been witnessing fierce clashes between Islamist militias and pro-government forces trying to recapture the city.

    As of now, Libya's cities of Benghazi, Tripoli and Darnah are dominated by Islamist insurgents. Local residents talk of deteriorating religious tolerance, tightened control on the media and a sharp rise in Islamist propaganda in the area.

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