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Kerry, European Ministers Welcome More Peace Talks for Libya

FILE - Libyan soldiers take a break from fighting with militants on the frontline in Al Ajaylat, 120 kilometers (75 miles) west of Tripoli, in this Feb. 21, 2015 photo.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and five European counterparts are welcoming this week's resumption of U.N.sponsored peace talks for Libya.

In a joint statement Sunday, Kerry and the British, French, German, Italian, and Spanish foreign ministers strongly urged all parties to negotiate in good faith, form a national unity government, and work for an unconditional cease-fire.

"Now is the time for all groups in Libya to more forward in a spirit of compromise. Further delay in reaching a political agreement only deepens the schisms in Libyan society and emboldens those who seek to profit from the ongoing conflict."

The ministers also threatened sanctions against anyone who undermines Libya's political transition. They said Libya can only have a secure and prosperous future through compromise.

Libyan political parties are set to meet Monday in Algeria. U.N. Special Representative Bernardino Leon holds another round of peace talks Wednesday in Morocco.

Libya has been plagued with terrorism, violence and political chaos since dictator Moammar Gadhafi was toppled and killed in 2011.

Islamists have seized the capital, Tripoli, and set up a separate government, forcing the internationally recognized government to flee to the east.