Paris conference discusses Libya peace

World leaders at an international meeting on Libya have reaffirmed their commitment to ensure the war-torn nation will go ahead with elections as planned next month.

French President Emmanuel Macron hosted the conference in Paris on Friday. US Vice President Kamala Harris, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and others attended.

The leaders agreed to dispatch an international election observation group to the North African nation and monitor a ceasefire signed last year by the country's rival factions.

Participants also called for the withdrawal of mercenaries and foreign forces engaged in Libya's civil war. Conflict has divided the country into east and west since the collapse of Muammar al-Qadhafi's dictatorship 10 years ago.

Presidential and parliamentary elections are scheduled on December 24 with hopes of uniting the country.

After Friday's conference, Macron told reporters that Turkey and Russia must withdraw their mercenaries and military forces without delay, calling them a threat to Libyan security. The two countries have been involved on opposite sides.

Continued maneuvering by rival factions is raising concerns over whether the elections will be free and fair.