The Libyan prime minister was in the United Arab Emirates Wednesday meeting with its rulers to shore up critical support against Islamist-allied militias that forced him and his allies out of the capital over the summer.

Abdullah Al-Thinni and the embattled parliament that appointed him need the financial and political backing of wealthy Gulf Arab allies like the UAE if they hope to grab back their seat of power from rivals working to set up their own government.

The parliament that backs al-Thinni is virtually powerless and has no control over Libya’s three largest cities. Its lawmakers along with al-Thinni were forced to relocate to the remote eastern city of Tobruk far from the capital. […]