TRIPOLI, Libya, Dec. 17 (UPI) -- A peace deal has been signed by Libya's warring factions, who will now form a national unity government.
The deal was brokered by the United Nations with the hope of bringing stability to the country and the North African region in the fight against the Islamic State.
Libya has essentially been two countries since the death of Moammar Gadhafi in 2011. One self-declared government in Libya's capital of Tripoli and another in the eastern part of the country that is the government recognized by the rest of the world. Both are supported by various militia.
But despite the deal being signed by multiple parties, including members of the opposing parliaments and local councils, many others on either side of the country refuse to accept the deal and forming a new government.
"This is just the beginning of a long journey for Libya," said U.N. envoy Martin Kobler at the signing ceremony. "Signing is only the first step on the road to putting Libya back on the right track. The door is always open to those who are not here today. The new government must move urgently to address the concerns of those who feel marginalized."
The U.S. State Department offered its encouragement to the agreement.
"We applaud the efforts of those courageous Libyan leaders to rebuild a united Libya," said spokesperson John Kirby. " We stand ready to support the implementation of the political agreement and are committed to providing a unified government full political backing in technical and economic security and counter terrorism assistance. The U.S. will stand with you as you take the next necessary steps to build Libyan peace and security."
British troops could also be sent to support the fledgling government but would not be in a combat role.