Najla el-Mangoush has been “temporarily suspended” and will be subject to an “administrative investigation” by a commission chaired by the justice minister, Dbeibah said on Sunday evening in an official decision posted on Facebook.
The Libyan foreign ministry sought to play down the matter, and described it as a “chance and unofficial encounter”, but news of the meeting had already led to street protests in several cities.
The political row broke out Sunday after the Israeli foreign ministry said the two top diplomats had met the previous week.
The ministry said Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen and Mangoush, his Libyan counterpart in the Tripoli-based Government of National Unity, spoke at a meeting in Rome hosted by Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani.
“I spoke with the foreign minister about the great potential for the two sides from their relations,” Cohen asserted in a statement.
The Libyan foreign ministry, however, announced on Sunday evening that Mangoush had “refused to meet with any party” representing the Israeli regime.
“What happened in Rome was a chance and unofficial encounter, during a meeting with his Italian counterpart, which did not involve any discussion, agreement or consultation,” the ministry said in a statement.
In the encounter, the statement said, Mangoush had reiterated “in a clear and unambiguous manner Libya's position regarding the Palestinian cause".
The ministry also criticized Israel for attempts to “present this incident” as a “meeting or talks”.
On the streets of Tripoli and its suburbs, protests erupted Sunday evening to condemn any normalization with Israel.
The protests spread to other cities where young people blocked roads, burned tires and waved the Palestinian flag.
The protesters set fire to the Israeli flag during demonstrations in the northwestern cities of al-Zawiya and Tajoura.
In Tajoura, demonstrators closed a major street in protest against the meeting. They threatened to escalate their actions, including blocking railway access to Tripoli.
Under the so-called Abraham Accords, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco signed US-brokered normalization deals with the Israeli regime in late 2020. Palestinians have denounced the deals as a “betrayal” to their cause.
on Sunday, Palestinian resistance movement Islamic Jihad said the meeting between Mangoush and Cohen is "a dangerous step back from the principles of the Ummah (Islamic nation) and falling into the swamp of normalization of relations with the Zionist regime".
"We are confident that the brotherly nation of Libya will not accept these concessionist talks, and as a free nation it will not surrender to ransom," it added.
Source: Press TV
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