The United Nations is likely to delay a conference intended to prepare Libya for elections this year until there is more support from rival leaders, sources familiar with the plans said. The national meeting is central to a U.N. and Western roadmap for a vote in Libya as a way out of its eight-year war since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi. But big players and their allied armed groups wield considerable power under the status quo, and there is mistrust between rival governments and parliaments. Libya splintered following the NATO-backed revolt against Gaddafi and has since 2014 been divided between competing political and armed groups based in Tripoli and the east. More delay in the U.N.-sponsored conference, where Libyans from all walks of society are supposed to decide details of their elections such as the presidential or parliamentary system, would also probably push back an actual vote.Full Article: Exclusive: U.N. may push back Libya election conference | Reuters.
Articles about voting issues in Libya.
Libya should press ahead with national elections even if voters reject a draft constitution in a planned referendum, the head of the country’s internationally recognised parliament said. The comments by Aguila Saleh could help assuage U.N. and Western concerns that the House of Representatives (HoR) might try to undermine efforts to organise elections to help end the years-long conflict in Libya. The United Nations and Western powers hope Libya will hold its national elections by June after holding a referendum on a constitutional framework to chart a way out of the conflict, which stems from the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.Full Article: Libya should hold elections even if draft constitution rejected-parliament chief | Reuters.
Libya’s electoral commission has asked the government for $28.7 million, saying that without funding to boost its “zero” budget it cannot make plans to prepare for a vote on a new constitution and later elections. Western powers and the United Nations hope Libya will hold a national election by June after a referendum on a constitutional framework to chart a way out of a conflict stemming from the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. A French plan, backed by the United Nations, had initially called for a presidential and parliamentary vote on Dec 10. But weeks of fighting in the capital Tripoli between competing groups and almost no progress between the North African country’s two rival parliaments made that impossible.Full Article: Libyan election commission says has zero budget to prepare polls | Reuters.
The U.N. envoy for Libya hopes another attempt to hold an election will take place by June after he scrapped a December plan, but said Libyans should first use a national conference in early 2019 to decide on the poll’s format. U.N. Special Envoy Ghassan Salame decided to abandon a plan to hold elections on Dec. 10 after a spike in violence in Libya, which has been gripped by conflict and paralysed by political deadlock since the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. Salame was speaking to Reuters before the start of a conference in Palermo organised by Rome with the aim of pushing forward a new U.N. plan. Salame said last week this plan would include an election in the spring, without elaborating.Full Article: Exclusive: U.N. envoy wants Libya election by June after Libyans decide format | Reuters.
Conditions in Libya are too unstable to hold elections, Prime Minister Fayez Seraj was cited as saying on Wednesday, casting doubts on a French-led push for a vote in December which aims to end years of turmoil and unify the North African country. French President Emmanuel Macron hosted a conference in May where rival Libyan factions agreed to work with the United Nations for a national election by Dec. 10. Libya splintered following the 2011 NATO-backed revolt that toppled Muammar Gaddafi, and since 2014 has been divided between competing political and military groups based in Tripoli and the east. “You can not vote with instability in the streets … it is necessary that everyone accepts the result of the ballot. We need shared rules,” Seraj, who leads the U.N.-brokered transitional government based in Tripoli, said in an interview with Italian daily Corriere della Sera.Full Article: Libya's PM says conditions for elections not yet ripe - paper | Reuters.
The head of one of Libya’s main political movements has alleged widespread fraud involving national identity cards, saying this could jeopardize elections that may be held late this year. Mahmoud Jibril, a former interim leader of the country, called for a thorough investigation into the abuses which could also have led to hundreds of thousands of fraudulent claims for welfare payments. The United Nations and rival Libyan factions say they hope presidential and parliamentary elections can be held on Dec. 10 in a step toward reunifying and stabilizing Libya, which has been in turmoil since a NATO-backed revolt toppled Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.Full Article: Libyan party chief warns of 'fake voters' due to ID card scam | Reuters.
Libyan rival factions agreed on Tuesday to hold elections on 10 December. The agreement was made at a Paris meeting called by the French president Emmanuel Macron. An adviser to UN-recognised Libyan prime minister Fayez al-Serraj said the agreement included the finalisation of a constitution by 16 September. Serraj, eastern-based military commander Khalifa Haftar and the heads of two parliamentary assemblies attended the talks. “The parties have committed to set the constitutional basis for elections and adopt the necessary electoral laws by 16 September and hold parliamentary and presidential elections on 10 December,” an eight-point joint statement read.Full Article: Libyan rivals agree December elections despite continuing violence | Middle East Eye.
Islamic State suicide bombers attacked Libya’s election commission in the capital on Wednesday, killing at least 14 people in the worst such attack in years that aimed to disrupt a nation-wide vote planned for later this year. The two bombers infiltrated the building in central Tripoli and fired on people inside, then detonated their explosives when their ammunition ran out, IS said in a statement circulated by its affiliated Amaq news agency. The Health Ministry earlier said the attack also set fire to the building, which could be seen in online videos showing thick black smoke billowing upward and security forces engaging in a gun battle. IS and other Islamic extremists in Libya oppose democratic elections, which the United Nations and Libya’s foreign backers are urging to take place this year despite security problems in the oil-rich North African country. Militants have often targeted elections in other countries, and IS has called for attacks on voting infrastructure in Libya.Full Article: Militants attack Libyan election commission, 14 Killed - The Washington Post.
Libya’s electoral commission announced Sunday it was scrapping the results from 24 polling stations due to fraud in a parliamentary election contested at 1 600 stations in June. An investigation has been launched and those responsible for the alleged fraud will be put on trial, said commission chief Imed al-Sayeh. Sayeh was speaking at a news conference to announce preliminary results for the June 25 election, which was marred by a poor turnout, violence and the murder of a leading women’s rights activist.Full Article: Fraud: Libya scraps vote results in 24 polling stations | News24.
Polling is under way in Libya to elect a new national parliament despite much of the country being in the grip of the worst violence since the 2011 uprising. Polling stations opened at 6am GMT on Wednesday, with 1.5 million registered voters choosing from the 1,628 candidates contesting 200 seats in parliament. The vote is Libya’s third legislative election since the declaration of liberation that ended the 2011 uprising against the former Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi. The 200-seat House of Representatives will replace the General National Congress which has become deadlocked in recent months in disputes between Islamist members and their opponents. On June 21 and 22, 11,000 registered Libyan voters in 13 foreign countries cast their votes in 22 voting stations, according to the Higher National Elections Committee.Full Article: Libya begins election amid violence - Middle East - Al Jazeera English.
Emad Al-Sayeh, head of the Libyan electoral commission, has affirmed that they are ready to go as planned with regards to the June 25 elections. Barely a week before the legislative elections in Libya, militias are involved in serious gun battles inciting fears that certain regions will not be able to vote. More than half of the eligible voters have registered for the elections while the minority Berbers or Amazighs have decided to boycott it if their demand are not met.Full Article: Libya : June 25 elections to take place despite challenges | Medafrica Times.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday urged Libya to stick to its plan to hold parliamentary elections on June 25 and defended the United Nations’ goal of organizing a meeting to promote reconciliation among the North African country’s competing factions. “The secretary-general continues to follow closely the situation in Libya and stresses the importance of the peaceful and timely holding of elections on 25 June,” U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters. “He also commends UNSMIL’s (U.N. Support Mission in Libya) work in the areas of good offices and facilitation of dialogue, which it carries out with impartiality and openness to all national parties concerned,” he added.Full Article: U.N. chief urges Libya to hold June 25 elections as planned | Reuters.
Benghazi residents on Saturday (April 19th) voted to choose their municipal council in an atmosphere of hope and optimism about a better future. The chairman of election subcommittee, Abdel Wahab al-Feki, expressed his relief over the smooth flow of election, which took place without any obstacles. He lauded the democratic transition and peaceful transfer of power in Benghazi from the local to the municipal council. He made the statement in a press conference held on Saturday at a tourist village by the subcommittee that oversees Benghazi municipal council election. The subcommittee mobilised more than 1,900 employees for at 128 election centres, al-Feki told the Press Solidarity news agency, noting that the armed forces provided support in securing and protecting election centres throughout Benghazi. “I hope the people will choose competent, effective and experienced candidates for the municipal council,” said Benghazi local council spokesperson Usama al-Sharif. “I also wish success to the candidates in this tough, although not impossible, stage.”Full Article: allAfrica.com: Libya: Benghazi Holds Municipal Elections.
The head of Libya’s election commission and two of its members resigned on Sunday, state media reported, a day after it released initial results of a vote for the country’s constitutional panel amid violence and boycotts. Nuri Al Abari, the head of the commission, did not say why he resigned, although it appeared to be out of concern over Libya’s volatile political situation and tension over the election. Later in the day, armed protesters stormed the parliament building while lawmakers were in session, trashing furniture, burning the speaker’s chair and beating at least three lawmakers, deputy speaker Hussain Al Ansari said. The February vote for the 60-member constitutional panel was marred by violence, with several voting stations coming under attack and security forces failing to secure others.Full Article: Head of Libya election commission resigns | GulfNews.com.
Libya’s electoral commission Saturday announced the preliminary results from polls for an assembly to draw up a new constitution, although 13 of 60 seats remained vacant after unrest in several areas stopped voting. The election to choose the body to draft a new constitution had been billed as a milestone in the country’s transition from the 42-year dictatorship of Moamer Gathafi, but failed to spark enthusiasm among voters. Political parties were not officially represented at the vote, which was organised on February 20, and only individuals were allowed to present themselves as candidates. Early results suggested liberal candidates did well in the capital Tripoli and the eastern city of Benghazi, which has been a hotbed of Islamist unrest since Gathafi’s ouster in October 2011. But the electoral commission said voting had not taken place in 93 out of some 1,600 stations because of unrest and a boycott by minority groups in some areas.Full Article: .:Middle East Online:::..
Libyans went to the polls Thursday to elect a panel to draft a new constitution in the latest milestone in the chaotic political transition following the overthrow of Moamer Gathafi. There was none of the voter enthusiasm that marked Libya’s first free election in July 2012 as public frustration mounts over the weak central government’s failure to restore order in the wake of the Arab Spring uprising. At Fatma al-Zahra school in the capital’s Hay al-Andalous district, less than 100 of 2,760 registered voters had cast their ballot two hours after polls opened. “It’s still early and it’s a holiday (for the vote). People are having a lie-in,” said Ali Hassan, the official in charge of the polling station. Houda Bouzid, a woman in her 30s, said: “I’ve come to vote for a candidate to push for women’s rights in the new constitution.”Full Article: .:Middle East Online:::..
Explosions rocked five polling stations in eastern Libya on Thursday as voters began electing a body to draft a new constitution, another step in the OPEC producer’s rocky transition since Muammar Gaddafi fell in 2011. Nobody was wounded in the dawn bomb attacks in the restive town of Derna, residents said, but the incident highlighted the volatile situation in the North African country. Prime Minister Ali Zeidan’s government is struggling to assert its authority over militias which helped topple Gaddafi but kept their weapons and have become major political players.Full Article: Libyans vote for constitution body amid bombs, tensions - World | The Star Online.
A threat by powerful militias to dissolve parliament ramped up pressure on Libya’s weak central government Wednesday on the eve of a vote to elect a constitution-drafting panel. The vote is the latest milestone in the chaotic transition following the 2011 overthrow of Moamer Kadhafi, but has generated little enthusiasm among Libyans frustrated by the government’s inability to impose order on former rebels. Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said late Tuesday a “compromise” had been reached with ex-rebel militias who had given Libya’s interim assembly a deadline to hand over power. Zeidan said the deadline had been extended by 72 hours but did not give further details of the compromise, telling journalists only that “wisdom has prevailed” after discussions with representatives from the militias, the assembly and the United Nations.Full Article: Militia threat pressures leaders on eve of Libya vote | GlobalPost.
The Justice and Construction Party, Libya’s second largest party, has called for early election in the crisis-stricken country. In a Friday statement, the Islamist party called on the General National Congress (GNC) to call early election “to widen the scope of national consensus and maintain social peace”. The party underlined the need to protect “the democratic path, peaceful power rotation and freedom of expression”.Full Article: Islamist party calls for early election in Libya.
Few Libyans have registered to vote for a constitutional commission, official figures showed Tuesday, as the country grapples with growing unrest two years after the toppling of Moammar Gadhafi. The High National Election Commission’s website said only 436,000 Libyans had signed up out of a total electoral list of 3.4 million ahead of a December 21 deadline. The low level of interest comes despite official calls to register, including a fatwa, or religious decree, issued by the highest religious authority in the Muslim country. Voters are apparently “not motivated enough to register,” said Tarek Metri, who heads the UN mission in Libya.Full Article: Few Libyans register for constitution commission poll | News , Middle East | THE DAILY STAR.