A meeting of the newly formed Interim Council in Benghazi.
In its draft "vision" the
self-appointed NTC condemned despotic regimes and called for Libya to "join
the international community"; to build a state in which racism, discrimination
and terrorism will be substituted with equality, justice, peace and freedom.
Two years later, terrorism was established in Libya for the first time in history,
while Libya itself was turned by the reckless actions of the UN into
the world's largest weapons supermarket for world terrorists, dubbed "Tesco" by
the Sunday Times, and a "Jihadist
Wonderland" by US Senator Rand Paul.
Formation of The NTC
The council was originally
known as "The Libyan Interim National Council"
(ntclibya.org/english/), before it was renamed "The Interim Transitional
National Council (ITNC)", with the name of the country
being: "The Libyan Republic",
as shown in the above image from the council's website. Hence European sources
began quoting the organisation by the name of Transitional National Council or TNC.
The name then was changed to the "National Transitional Council (NTC)",
as it appeared in its second website: ntclibya.com/. Both websites are live as
of February 2012.
The council was formed in Benghazi on the 27th of February
2011, but it was not officially declared established until the 05 March 2011.
However, the founding "declaration" found in its original website (ntclibya.org/arabic/first-announcement/)
is dated 02 March 2011. The link now redirects to the third website of the NTC:
ntc.gov.ly/. The NTC pledged to lead the uprising for New Libya, or Free
Libya, and oversee the transition period to an elected government after
the liberation of Libya. The council was assembled mostly from self-appointed
defectors and returned exiles, among other members whose identity were kept secret
(reportedly for security reasons). The Chief of the NTC, Mustafa Abdul Jalil,
was Gaddafi's justice minister until he defected to Benghazi. It was reported
in Libya that Abdul Jalil said all Libyans who served Gaddafi's
regime should be brought to answer questions regarding their previous deeds.
Recognition of The NTC
Most Libyans naturally declared their support for the interim organisation
to lead the uprising, and in a space of weeks the organisation became the symbol
of the struggle for freedom, equality and justice. The NTC quickly developed
strong ties with their Western and Arab allies and began securing the international
support it needed to legitimise the organisation, and to build the momentum required
to "protect the Libyan civilians" by all necessary means.
France recognised the NTC with an amazing speed, while most countries were
at first reluctant to (openly) express recognition of the self-appointed council
including the USA and UK - probably for technical reasons, radical flicker, leading
from behind, or sovereignty issues; but eventually they did, and were followed
by more countries soon afterwards. Canada initially said Gaddafi's regime then
still was the official government of Libya; while South Africa refused to
recognise the NTC right to the end, when Gaddafi was officially declared dead.
The council was thus declared by outsiders the only legitimate
representative of the Libyan people, without a referendum, without consultation
with the Libyan people, and despite the stark warnings regarding the NTC showing
signs of "Qaida
Flicker" and infiltration by radical rebels.
Shortly after installation, the NTC was the first to receive the blame for
and "weak" against the (popularised) militias in the background,
and thereby publicly weakening its authority, while concurrently making the
militias appear more powerful. Having nothing else to accomplish, the helpless
NTC begged the world to release the frozen funds, to commence rebuilding the
mess, but their allies somehow feared the funds will fall into the hands of loyalists'
ghosts at the CBL. The helpless NTC then urged people to respect the law they
do not have (in the newly liberated and dilapidated state), infested with weapons
and militias, infiltrated with sponsored radicals, plighted with cross-border contrabanda,
and inflicted with chaos and tribal divisions - apparently in the name of "protection"
and "humanitarian intervention" to effect a failed state in the name of "mistakes"!
One of the early speeches by the NTC Leader.
The Proposed Aim of The Transitional Council
From the Council's website (ntclibya.org/english/):
"The aim of the Transitional National Council is
to steer Libya during the interim period that will come after its complete liberation
and the destruction of Gaddafi’s oppressive regime. It will guide the country
to free elections and the establishment of a constitution for Libya . . . The
Council notes that it is the only legitimate body representing the people of
Libya and the Libyan state and calls on all the countries of the world to recognise
it and deal with it on the basis of international legitimacy. The Council
also notes that it will honour* and respect* all international and regional agreements
signed by the former Libyan government, emphasizing its aspirations in seeing
Libya play a significant role in the establishing international peace and security."
*: Temehu's note: [seemingly everything else to do with Gaddafi
and Libya will be destroyed, of course]!
The Transitional National Council says it was formed to
Ensure territorial security.
Organise the movement to liberate Libya from Gaddafi's rule.
Support local councils to restore normal life to the affected areas.
Oversee the creation of a constituent assembly to implement its goals.
Draft a new, just constitution to be put to a referendum.
Organise a democratic election after the liberation of the country.
Represent the February Uprising officially.
Create sub-committees to deal
with the issues facing the people of Libya during the transitional
Mustafa Abdul Jalil speaks to Aljazeera as the head of the newly formed NTC.
The first home page of the Interim Transitional
National Council (ITNC).
(Please note that the site has disappeared after the
NTC was dissolved. The current site access via the domain is not the same
as the original site. The above link leads to the archived site at:
The second home page of the National Transitional Council (NTC)
Please note that the site has disappeared after the NTC was dissolved.
The above link leads to the archived site at:
The third website of the NTC (appeared around the 23rd of February
The URL shows that this is the official government website, with the extension:
disappeared in late 2015.
NTC's Youtube Channel
(The channel has also disappeared
after the NTC was dissolved.
One would think all the NTC's websites should be preserved for historical reasons,
but unfortunately this was not the case.)
Founding Statement of the Interim Transitional National Council (TNC)
The founding statement was published by the website of the
NTC at: (ntclibya.org/english/founding-statement-of-the-interim-transitional-national-council/).
The founding statement was made on the 5th of March 2011 in Benghazi. The Council
said it derived "its legitimacy from the city councils who run the liberated
cities, and who had been formed by the revolution of the 17th February to fulfil
the revolutionary gains in order to achieve their goals." The Council
also said that the most important role is "the one played by the youth".
At this historic meeting, the council requested from the international
"to fulfil its obligations to protect the Libyan people from
any further genocide and crimes against humanity without any direct military
intervention on Libya soil."
The Council was headed by Mr. Mustafa Abdul Jalil and the meeting was attended
Mr. Othman Suleiman El-Megyrahi (Batnan Area)
Mr. Ashour Hamed Bourashed (Darna City)
Dr. Abdelallah Moussa El-myehoub (Qouba Area)
Mr. Zubiar Ahmed El-Sharif (Representative of the political prisoners)
Mr. Ahmed Abduraba Al-Abaar (Benghazi City)
Dr. Fathi Mohamed Baja (Benghazi City)
Mr. Abdelhafed Abdelkader Ghoga (Benghazi City)
Mr. Fathi Tirbil and Dr. Salwa Fawzi El-Deghali (Representative of youth
During the last few weeks of its life (before the elections), the NTC began
adding the words "or its replacement" after the title "The
National Transitional Council" in its published documents.
Declarations, Laws & Resolutions Issued By The NTC
TNC's Article (35), Constitutional Declaration.
According to the NTC all the laws that do not contradict with
the regulations of this declaration will remain effective and only the names
"All the current provisions decreed in the existing
legislations shall continue to be effective, in as much as they do not conflict
with the provisions of this "declaration", until the announcement of
new provisions to amend or repeal them. Each reference in these [old] provisions
to the so-called
"People's Congresses" or the "General People's Congress" shall
be taken as a reference to the "Interim Transitional National Council" or
the "General National Council [Congress]"; each reference to the "General
People's Committee" or the "People's Committees" is a reference
to the "Executive Board" or to the members of the Executive Board or
to the government or to the members of the government, each within his or her
jurisdictional boundaries; and each reference to the (Great Socialist People's
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya) shall be deemed as a reference to (Libya)."
Initially the NTC declared its legislative body was made of 31 members,
but later its website showed 33 members.
identities of some members during the early months of the uprising were not published
for safety reasons, since many of the areas were then still under Gaddafi's control.
But as of today, January 2012, the English website of the NTC still lists only
13 members out of the declared 33 (ntclibya.com/InnerPage.aspx?SSID=7&ParentID=3&LangID=1);
while in its Arabic website the published list contained 43 members, out of
the 48 members who the NTC said last November had voted-in the new prime minister
Around the 23rd of February 2012 a third list appeared in the organisation's
third website (ntc.gov.ly/NTCMembers.aspx),
containing 76 members. The council
is chaired by Mustafa Mohammed Abdul Jalil. The interim body will remain in place
until democratic elections are held to establish an official government.
1. Mustafa Mohammad Abdul Jalil (Chairman)
Mr Abdul Jalil was born in the city of Bayda in 1952. He graduated from the
department of Shari’a and Law in the Arabic Language and Islamic Studies faculty
of The University of Libya in 1975. Mr. Abdul Jalil was appointed Assistant to
the Secretary of the Public Prosecutor in the city of Al-Bayda, before he became
a judge in 1978. In 2002, he was appointed President of the
Court of Appeals, then President of the Court in Al Bayda, before becoming Gaddafi's
Justice Minister in 2007.
2. Mr. Abdul Hafiz Ghoga (Vice-Chairman)
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ghoga represents the city of Benghazi.
Resigned in January 2012 after the events in Benghazi in January 2012.
3. Mr. Fatih Turbel (Youth):
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Turbel represents the city of Benghazi.
4. Mr. Zubeir Ahmed el-Sharif (Political Prisoners)
As a member of the NTC, Mr. el-Sharif represents political prisoners.
5. Mr. Omar Al-Hariri (Military Affairs)
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Al-Hariri represents the National Army.
6. Dr. Fatih Mohammed Baja (Political Affairs)
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Baja represents the city of Benghazi.
7. Dr. Salwa Fawzi el-Deghili (Legal Affairs and Women)
As a member of the NTC, Dr. el-Deghili represents the city of Benghazi.
Dr. el-Deghali has a PhD In constitutional law and previously taught at the Academy
of Graduate Studies in Benghazi. She is responsible for Legal Affairs and heads
the Legal Advisory Committee.
8. Dr. Abdullah Moussa Al-Mayhoub As a member of the NTC, Dr. Al-Mayhoub represents the city of Qubba.
9. Mr. M. Ahmed al-Abbar (Economics)
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Al- Abaar represents the city of Benghazi.
10. Mr. Ashour Bourashed As a member of the NTC, Mr. Bourashed represents the city of Derna.
11. Mr. Uthman Suleiman Sad Ehbarah al-Megrahi As a member of the NTC, Mr. Megrahi represents the city of Tobruk.
12. Dr Suleiman Al-Fortiya
No photo given.
As a member of the NTC, Dr. Al-Fortiya represents the city of Misratha.
13. Mr. Mohamed Al-Muntasir
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Al-Muntasir represents the city of Misratha.
The following list includes those members who were added later to the above
14. Ibrahim Yousef Khlifa Bengheshshir
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Bengheshshir represents the city of Misratha.
15. Khaled Emhammed Assaeh
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Assaeh represents the city of Benghazi.
16. Intisar Anbarek Amrajea Alaqili
As a member of the NTC, Intisar Alaqili represents the city of Benghazi.
17. Idris Mohammed Boufayed
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Boufayed represents the city of Gharyan.
18. Mussa Alkouni Belkani
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Belkani represents the city of Ubari.
19. Imhemmed Mansour Arremmash
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Arremmash represents the city of Sirte.
20. Hasan Mohammad Assaghir
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Assaghir represents the city of Wadi Ashshati.
21. Saad Mohammad Naser Abdul Jalil
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Abdul Jalil represents the city of Wadi Ashshati.
22. Mustafa Alhouni
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Alhouni l represents the city of Aljofrah.
23. Khaled Emhammed Tawfiq Nasrat
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Nasrat represents the city of Zawya.
24. Taher Salem Dyab
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Dyab represents the city of Almerj.
25. Lamin Ahmed Lamin Belhaj
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Belhaj represents the city of Tripoli.
26. Abdunnaser Said Salem Ben Remdan
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ben Remdan represents the city of Tripoli.
27. Ali Tawfiq Muftah Ashtewi
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ashtewi represents the city of Tripoli.
28. Abdullah Zaki Abdullah Banoun
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Banoun represents the city of Tripoli.
29. Dr. Milad Mohammad Salem Alaoud
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Alaoud represents the city of Tripoli.
30. Abdunnaser Bashir Ben Nafea
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ben Nafea represents the city of Tripoli.
31. Usama Mohammad Alhadi Boukraza
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Boukraza represents the city of Tripoli.
32. Saleh Saleh Ali Darhoub
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Darhoub represents the city of Tripoli.
33. Mohammad Naser Mabrouk Alharizi
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Alharizi represents the city of Tripoli.
34. Abderrazeq Salem Mussa Madi
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Madi represents the city of Yefren.
35. Ali Qalmah Ali
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ali represents the city of Murzuq.
36. Abdulhadi Mahmoud Shawesh
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Shawesh represents the city of Murzuq.
37. Abdulmajid Gheet Abdelmajid Saifannaser
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Saifannaser represents the city of Sabha.
38. Hbeil Aribi Douai
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Douai represents the city of Jado.
39. Faraj Mohammad Ali Sheib
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Sheib represents the city of Cyrene (Shahhat).
40. Ali Mohammad Ajwani
As a member of the NTC, Mr. Ajwani represents the city of Sabratha.
41. Emadeddin Nureddin Nasir, Zawya.
42. Ahmed Khayrallah Addayikh, Albayda.
43. Abdulqader Abdussalam Akmensar, Khoms.
44. Khaled Ahmed Shekshek, Zliten.
Around the 23rd of February 2012 a third list appeared in the organisation's
third website (ntc.gov.ly/NTCMembers.aspx).
This list contained 76 members:
Mustafa Mohammed Fadil Abdul Jalil (Chairman; Albayda)
Mansour Milad Younis (Gheryan)
Ashour Hamad Bu Rashed (Darna)
Salwa Fawzi el-Deghili (Benghazi)
Ahmed Hassan Moftah Azwai (Kufra)
Fathi Mohammed Bajah (Benghazi)
Othman Suleiman Saaed Ahbarh Almgirhi (Tobruk)
Intisar Mubarak Amrajaa Alaqeeli (Benghazi)
Ahmad Alzubair Ahmed Alsharif Alsanusi (Benghazi)
Omar Mohammed Hariri (Tobruk)
Suleiman Mohammed Alfortiyah (Misurata)
Mohammed Abdullatif Montasir (Misurata)
Ahmad Abdriya Alabbar (Benghazi)
Jamal Saleh Omar Issa (Kabaw)
Abdullah Mohammed Kezima (Zawya)
Moses Alkuni Blkani (Ubari)
Ali Qalma Mohammed Ali (Murzuq)
Imadaddin Noureddin Nsir (Zawya)
Mustafa Assalhin Mohammed Alhouni (Jufrah)
Ibrahim Yousef Khalifa Bingheshir (Misurata)
Abdulbaset Abubakar Abdulsalam Naama (Tarhuna)
Mohammad Alsoiei Sayeh Khalifa Allatif (Azizia)
Farhat Hamid Shershari (Sorman)
Mohammed Naser Mabrook Alharizi (Tripoli)
Hassan Ali Alsaghir (Beach Valley)
Alamin Ahmad Belhaj (Tripoli)
Salem Masoud Kanan (Nalut)
Ali Mohammed Ali Almanaa (Ghadames)
Khaled Amhammed Tawfiq Nasrat (Zawya)
Tahir Salem Diab (Merj)
Mohammed Khalifa Salem Zinealabidin (location
not shown in the list)
Abdulhadi Mahmoud Shawish (Murzuq)
Khaled Saleh Ramadan (Msellata)
Alhasan Almasri Alfadil Almaghrbi (Ajdabiya)
Abdulmajeed Ghaith Saifalnasr (Sabha)
Ali Mohammed Ahmed Aljawani (Sabratha)
Mansour Mohammed Kikhia (Benghazi)
Almukhtar Saleh Mesbah Aljaddal (Ajeelat)
Ali Altawfiq Moftah Alshtwi (Bengheshir, Tripoli)
Saleh Abdulrahim Mohammed (Albayda)
Faraj Mohammed Shoaib (Cyrene)
Khalid Ahmad Mansour Shekshek (Zliten)
Abdulqadir Abdulsalam Ahmed Almensaz (Khoms)
Abdullah Zaki Banoun (طرابلس الوسط : Middle Tripoli)
Abdulrazek Salem Musa Madi (Yefren)
Mohammed Ahmed Mansour Alremmash (Sirte)
Ahabayl Arbi Mohammed Duaai (Jado)
Younis Ali Esaeed Alberghthi (Tokra)
Abdulnnser Bashir Bennafia (Tripoli)
Milad Mohammed Salem Alaoud (Garabolli)
Ahmed Khairallah Mohammed Addayekh (Albayda)
Abdulnnaser Saeed Salem Benremdan (Hai Alandulous, Tripoli)
Osama Mohammed Alhadi Abukraza (Alswani, Tripoli)
Saleh Saleh Derhob (Tripoli)
Abdulbaset Mesbah Abadi (Tripoli)
Khalid Amhammed Alsaeh Ibrahim (Benghazi)
Mohammed Almabrouk Omar Abuzeid (Gheryan)
Sadek Hussein Abdulsalam Ghaith (Khoms)
Mohammed Othman Ali Ashnaf (Sabha)
Abdulghanie Ahmed Alftiesi (Zliten)
Abulqasim Abdulrazzek Abdulsalam Alarbi (Unari)
Mohammed Alnaas Tahir (Sabha)
Ibrahim Abdulsalam Hamed Alasmer (Sabha)
Saifannasr Abdulsalam Belhasan Mahjoub (Tazerbu)
Hassan Musa Mohammed Hassan (Ajdabiya)
Saaed Mohammed Nasr (Alshathi)
Abdulrazzek Mukhtar Ahmed Abdulqader (Tajoura, Tripoli)
Omar Mohammed Abuzeid (Rujban)
Embarek Rhil Dou Said (Sirte)
Reyad Sultan Ahmed Abushwashi (Zuwarah)
Mohammed Ramadan Sidi Omar (Ghat)
Mohammed Ali Almahdi Alsharif (Jufrah)
Khalifa Abulqasim Kaaal (Ejmeil)
Fathi Hamad Khalifa Abuzwidah (Alabyar)
Abdulrazzek Abdulsalam Alaradi (Tripoli)
Mustafa Essa Lendi (Kufra)
On the 24th of June 2012 NTC's new spokesperson, Saleh Darhoub, has revealed a new list of NTC members. The list was dated to the 18 of June 2012 and contained 98 members,
as shown in the following PDF download.
The new list also lists the dates on which each member joined the council.
The Executive Board, originally named The Crisis Committee
(لجنة الأزمات), was established on the 5th of March 2011 to implement the decisions
of the National Transitional Council. All its members were appointed by the NTC,
based on their expertise. The Executive Board is responsible for guaranteeing
the effective management of the various sectors of government until the forthcoming
1. Dr. Mahmoud Jibril: Chairman & Head of International
In 2007 he was appointed in Libya as head of the National Economic Development
Board for the promotion of liberalisation and privatisation policies. He left
his position in 2010. He was involved in the “Libya Vision” project aiming at
instituting democracy in Libya."
2. Vice-Chairman Dr. Ali al-Issawi
3. Media: Mahmoud Shammam
4. Culture and Community: Atia Lawgali
5. Internal Affairs and Local Government: Ahmed Hussein Al-Darrat
6. Health: Dr. Naji Barakat
7. Justice and Human Rights: Mohammed al-Allagi
8. Social Welfare: Dr. Hania al-Gumati
9. Economics: Dr. Abdullah Shamia
10. Finance and Oil: Dr. Ali al-Tarhuni
11. Transportation and Communications: Dr. Anwar al-Faytouri
12. Environment: Abulgassim Nimr
13. Religious Affairs and Endowments: Abdulsalam al-Shikhy
14. Reconstruction and Infrastructure: Ahmed al-Jehani
15. Education: TBC.
08 August 2009
Libya's Transitional National Council has fired its executive
board. This came after last week's assassination of its armed forces general
Abdulfattah' Younis, and amidst growing fear of sleeper cells and other groups
being among them. The TNC has asked Mahmoud Jabril to re-elect a new council.
03 October 2011
The NTC named the new temporary government, but not with many
Mahmoud Jibril: remains in his position but also takes over as foreign minister.
Ali al-Tarhouni: will continue acting as oil minister.
Abdul-Rahman al-Keissah: the new minister for those who died and wounded.
Hamza Abu Fas: will replace Sheik Salem al-Shikhy as the minister of religious
Ahmed al Dharrat: the interim internal affairs minister.
However, the temporary government announced by the former
interim prime minister Mahmoud Jibril contained names previously
associated with the Gaddafi regime, and as a result it had triggered the first
ever protest against the NTC, when demonstrators from Mesratha took to the streets
and declared they will never be ruled again by anyone who served Gaddafi – not
even with "one word". The government was sacked and a new one announced,
with el-Keib as Prime Minister.
31 October 2011
Libya's New Interim Prime Minister
Abdul al-Rahim el-Keib has been elected Libya's interim Prime
Minister, after wining 26 votes out of 48 votes. Abdul al-Rahim el-Keib
is an electrical engineer at Tripoli University, who spent 25 years teaching
at the University of Alabama, in the USA. Most reports say he was an
academic man who had no links with politics. The Guardian said
he funded Tripoli's resistance during the February Uprising.
New Interim Government
22 November 2011
A new cabinet line-up was announced by el-Keib on the 22nd
of November 2011. The cabinet included
two female ministers: Dr Fatimah al-Hamrush, Minister of Health, and Mrs Mabrukah
Sharif Jibril, Minister for Social Affairs; and three women Deputy Ministers.
The NTC members initially agreed to the list, but soon re-opened discussions
regarding the list, stating that many areas were ignored while other areas were
favoured because of certain events tied with those areas. Libyans were angered,
especially the Berbers and the people of Cyrenaica and Fezzan for being marginalised;
leading to more
protests than the ones created by Jebril sacked government.
The Current Libyan Transitional Government
Prime Minister's Office (ديوان رئاسة الوزراء): pm.gov.ly/
Prime Minister: Abdurahim El-Keib
Deputy Prime Ministers: Mustafa Abushagur; Omar Abdallal Abdulkarim
Minister of Defence: Col. Osama Juwaili
Minister of Interior: Fawzi Abdula’ali
Minister of Foreign Affiars: Ashour Ben Khayil
Minister of Finance: Hasan Zaglam
Minister of Planning: Isa Tuwaijri
Minister of Trade and Commerce: Sharkasi
Minister of Oil: Ben Yizza
Minister of Religious Affairs: Hamza AbuFaris
Minister of the Martyrs: Ashraf bin Ismail
Minister of Social Affairs: Mabrouka Jibril
Minister of Education, Sulaiman Sahli
Minister of Work: Mustafa Rujbani
Minister of Justice: Khalifa Ashour
Minister of Health: Dr. Fatima Hamroush
Minister of Local Government: Mohammad Hadi Hashemi Harari
Minister of Housing: Ibrahim Eskutri
Minister of Housing: Ibrahim Alsagoatri
Minister of Telecome and Informatics: Anwar Fituri
Minister of Transportation: Yousef Wahashi
Minister of Agriculture: Abdul-Hamid Sulaiman Bufruja
Minister of Industry: Mahmoud Fetais
Minister of Scientific Research and Higher Education: Dr. Naeem Gheriany
Minister of Youth: Fathi Terbil
Minister of Culture and Civil Society: Abdul Rahman Habil
Minister of Electricity
& Renewable Energy: Awadh Barasi
Minister of Investment: Ahmed Attiga
According to the governmental website of the NTC (ntc.gov.ly),
the Local Councils (المجالس المحلية) in the liberated
cities were created to fill the "political vacuum" left by the fall of the
ousted regime, in coordination with the people of these cities to select their
own representatives from those citizens renown for their good reputation. As
of the 24th of February 2012, the NTC said in its website that it has approved
53 "local councils", distributed across Libya, and based
density" and "geographical
area". The list published in its website contained 36 "local councils".
Those areas with less than the "required
have a kind of "Conduct
Council" (مجلس تسييري ), operating under the nearest Local
Council. This, the NTC says, has created some issues early on, because members
of the conduct councils expressed their wish to declare alliance directly to
and function under the authority of the NTC, and not via intermediary councils
from other areas. This hurdle, it says, was eventually overcome.
The local councils were requested to apply for approval from
the NTC, and provide the necessary documentation including a list of the selected
members and a "meeting's proceeding" detailing the reached agreement.
The application then will be forwarded to the NTC and to the "Local
Councils Committee" for inspection and approval. If successful, an
official letter from the National Transitional Council will be sent to the
local council, informing its members of the official approval and
the establishment of the council.
Conduct councils are approved via the local
councils under which they operate, to distribute the local administrative boundaries (or constituencies)
prepared by the National Transitional Council. The approved documentation will
then be archived and kept updated with all the activities of the local council.
المجالس المحلية المعتمدة لدى المجلس الوطني الإنتقالي
NTC's Approved Local Councils
Tobruk Local Council
Faraj Mohammed Yasin
Ghadames Local Council
Murzuq Local Council
Mohammed Adam Mohammed
Qubba Local Council
Naaim Hmed Atia
Cyrene Local Council
Saleh Ali Abdullah
Bayda Local Council
Merj Local Council
Hassan Ahmed Saleh
Tokra Local Council
Mohammed Belgasem Alaziz
Benghazi Local Council
Abdulmonain Faraj Alwheishi
Ajdabiya Local Council
Rajab Ahmed Alsanusi
Kufra Local Council
Mohammed Hmed Bousnina
Alshati Local Council
Ali Said Nasr
Tazerbu Local Council
Salah Saad Abdullah Embarek
Mesratha Local Council
Khlifa Abdullah Azwawi
Zliten Local Council
Abdulsalam Saleh Bohjer
Tarhouna Local Council
Ali Mohammed Alnouri
Tripoli Local Council
Abdulrazek Ahmed Bohjer
Sabratha Local Council
Saad Karir Abulqasim
Serman Local Council
Salaheddin Mohammed Almabrouk
Ajeelat Local Council
Abbas Abdulhafid Almgeraen
Sabha Local Council
Abdulrahman Mohammed Alsanusi
Msellata Local Council
Alaabed Alhemmali Mohammed
Ubari Local Council
Idris Mohammed Shalqem
Zuwarah Local Council
Abubaker Ibrahim Attallou'
Ghat Local Council
Nasr Yousef Mohammed
Zintan Local Council
Altahir Omran Alturki
Jabal Baten Local Council
Mohammed Abouajila Alkouni
Nalut Local Council
Khoms Local Council
Jamal Alamin Alnaaas
Sirte Local Council
Mohammed Ali Keblan
Gheryan Local Council
Ibrahim Ommar Alsaadi
Jado Local Council
Salim Ahmed Albadrani
Yefren Local Council
Salim Omar Thwawa
Aziziya Local Council
Omran Bashir Almerghni
Ejmeil Local Council
Fathi Ali Alhamrouni
Derna Local Council
Mohammed Abdalhafid Almasori
Source of the Arabic list: ntc.gov.ly/LocalCouncel.aspx
(As of 24 February 2012)
Human Rights & Abuses In Transitional Libya
According to some western experts, democracy cannot be imposed on sovereign
because it is the culture of these people that requires "democratisation" and
not the installed armies that terrorise them in the background. A Tunisian analyst
was recently reported to have said that delicious "degla" grows
only in "certain soil"; without saying anything of knowingly transplanting
degla in mud! "The
assumption that a central government or a national army can be unloaded in kit
form from the nose cone of a C-5 Galaxy, and stay long after the transporter
has lumbered home, is an imperial conceit", the Guardian concedes.
People and leaders alike need to be educated about the "right
way of history", about the painful consequences of "'inequality",
about tolerance and peace, about respect of "sovereignty" and "human
of indigenous tribes, and about the true
wisdom of science and the benefits of diligent dialogue before they
can tell right from wrong. Unless these issues are resolved, wars
will remain a lucrative aspect of human's alleged
advanced culture. Can
one see smoke without fire?
Wars have been around since the beginning, and so it follows
whenever conflict erupts conflicting reports follow, the law disappears, unjust
constitutional declarations appear, war crimes proliferate, human
rights abuses flourish, looting bounces back without fear of retribution, archaeological
robberies & vandalism
thrive, chaos reigns, and audaciously the entire infrastructure of the country
is often destroyed in the name of protection & change.
The only way, it seems, to end human rights abuses is to banish "war" itself,
blows back full circle to recycle the same so-oldcycle!
Critical Summary of the Transitional National Council's Objectives
Ensure territorial security - [by leaving all Libya's
borders open for criminal & radical cross-border activity].
Organise the movement to liberate Libya from Gaddafi's rule - [by
grotesquely killing Gaddafi and leaving Libya unliberated].
Support local councils to restore normal life to the affected areas - [by
not reporting the atrocities left to take place].
Oversee the creation of a constituent assembly to implement its goals - [by
self-appointing more "helpless" members].
Draft a new, just constitution to be put to a referendum- [after
imposing the Constitutional Declaration to deny the Berbers].
Organise a democratic election after the liberation of the country- [by
barring Berber Constituent
8 from party-elections].
Represent the February Uprising officially - [by proposing
to make polygamy
easier and declare being "helpless"].
Create sub-committees to deal with the issues facing the people of Libya
during the transitional period - [by effecting 374 political
parties (or 'entities') while wars were still going on].
(1) The First Protests In New Libya
Enjoying the newly "granted" freedom of speech, the Libyans are
now taking an active role in debating the current issues challenging the country.
The following are some of the issues debated in today's Libya, which the NTC
urgently needs to address, not "urge", and assure the Libyan people
that not only they are aware of these deeply-troubling issues but also they are
capable and ready to present the beneficial solutions to tackle them and restore
tranquility to Libya, once more.
The failure of the first temporary government announced by the former rebel
prime minister Mahmoud Jibril, which contained names previously associated with
the ousted regime, had triggered the first ever protest against the NTC. The
long overdue second cabinet line-up, announced on the 22nd of November 2011 by
the transitional prime minister el-Keib, had created even more protests than
the previous government sacked by the NTC. Peaceful protestors took to the streets
across Libya, shouting: "down
to the new government", "the
banks are empty", and other similar revolutionary slogans
that express anger more than anything else.
(2): The Government Criticising The Government
The transitional Prime Minister Abdurahim Elkeib had declared
on Wednesday the 25th of April 2012 that the NTC is hindering his government’s
efforts to hold elections on time, and that the NTC is running a "vicious
media campaign" against his transitional government (pm.gov.ly/news/619.html).
These are strong words to come from the transitional Prime Minister; but is it
right for him to blame others for his government's failure to implement the law?
Is it right for him to express this deep schism within
the government when the Libyans are looking up to them to lead by example? Why
cannot his government arrest whoever is attempting to obstruct the law including
any member from the NTC? The Prime Minister had already
answered "some" of
these questions in the same statement he made at the above website,
when he said:
"ولذا فإن الحكومة لن تتحمل
هذه المسؤولية التاريخية وتبعاتها التي قد تنحرف بالثورة عن مسارها . . ."
: "Thus the government shall not take this historic
responsibility and what it entails, which may deviate the revolution from its
(3): NTC's Draconian Law:
On the 2nd of May 2012 the NTC was very happy to publish its
Law 37 (of 2012), without any consultation with the Libyan people, and in doing
so it brought the whole world against its new "draconian" measures
to curb "free
Even though the law's title, namely "Criminalising
The Glorification of The Tyrant", gives the impression that the law
primarily deals with curbing the activities of Gaddafi's loyalists, the Articles
within the law clearly undermine the presumably granted freedom. Introducing
such measures to control the opposition during the transition sends
the wrong message to the watching world.
Like many other laws and declarations passed by the NTC, one can only guess
the strategy behind such 'controversial' decision. The clue however
was 'spelt out' by the transitional prime minister el-Keib when he was reported
to have informed his English allies in London (on the 25th of May 2012) that
Law 37 and other such laws will
"disappear" after the forthcoming national elections! Nuri al-Abbar,
head of the election commission, told reporters that he blames nobody for the
postponement of the elections, because it was due to the fact that he wanted
to make sure that voter registration had no links to Gaddafi (libya.tv/en/elections-postponed-until-july-7/).
However, "An NTC official told Amnesty International that the law
aims to protect the sensibilities of victims of al-Gaddafi’s crimes, and to promote
national reconciliation. Another official pointed out that the law was needed
because some teachers continued to glorify al-Gaddafi’s rule in schools, threatening
the “17 February Revolution” . . . Free speech must be guaranteed for all, not
only supporters of the new government,” said Philip Luther."
There is no doubt that Gaddafi's officials and soldiers who committed crimes
against the Libyan people need to be brought before Libyan law. But substituting
one oppressive method with another makes Libyans appear detached from the reality
of the democratic process when they are not, simply because such draconian measures
were not passed by the Libyans themselves, but by others who appear to mis-represent
them. This calls for all leaders to represent the aspirations of all the
Libyan people and not misrepresent any of them in any way.
Hence the President of the Libyan National Council
for Civil Liberties & Human Rights, Mohammed Allagi (a former minister
of justice), said law 37 constitutes
a flagrant violation of human rights, a serious
setback, and an obnoxious duplication of the past, if not worse. He also
criticised Article 13 of Law 15 of 2012 in an article published by the website
of the NTC itself, at: ntc.gov.ly/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=29:2012-05-10-13-21-30.
And according to the LFJL, "through the unilateral enactment of such
laws, in the absence of involvement or consultation with key stakeholders including
civil society organisations representing various interests of the Libyan public,
the NTC is seriously undermining its own legitimacy."
The Prime Minister's Office run an online referendum
on the issue at its website (pm.gov.ly/poll/3-2012-05-03-21-51-34.html),
to ask the Libyan people for their opinion (after the law was passed
and not before, of course), in which so far 66%
of Libyans voted against the draconian law, and 33% approved the oppressive
move (out of a total of 105,000 votes). But the opinion of Ahmed Bin Musa
is typically Libyan, when
wrote: " . . . مبروك .. أنت اول سجين سياسي
في عصر ثورة 17 فبراير أبداً" :- "congratulations . . . you are
the first ever political prisoner of the 17th of February revolution".
According to Amnesty International:
"The law prescribes prison sentences for spreading
false rumours, propaganda or information with the aim of harming national defence
or “terrorizing people” or “weakening citizens’ morale” during war time. Law
37 of 2012 imposes life imprisonment if such actions “harm the country” . . .
took to the streets in February of last year and paid a heavy price to get rid
of such repressive practices, not to see them reintroduced,” said Philip Luther,
Amnesty International’s Director for the Middle East and North Africa."
Update: Law 37 Overturned by Libya's
On Thursday the 14th of June 2012, Libya's supreme judge,
Kamal Bashir Dahan, scrapped Law 37 and announced in a brief hearing that the
court has decided to accept the appeal of Law 37/2012 because it is unconstitutional
under the NTC’s Constitutional Declaration of the 3rd of August 2011.
(4): Is it "interim" or "transitional"
Libyans say the role of the council should have ended as soon as Libya was declared
liberated (23 October 2011), and a new transitional government should have been
elected to run the country before the final elections of an official government.
They also said the "transitional"
council should be elected from and by Libyans who had no ties with the ousted
regime and who are well educated and have good experience
and expertise. However, According
to Reuters, "Interim government officials say it is impossible for
them [to] sack hundreds of officials merely because they served under
Gaddafi". Mustafa Abdul Jalil himself said during the war
that he would resign as soon as Gaddafi's regime comes to an end, but then when
he was asked after liberation why he did not fulfil his "promise",
he was reported to have said that he was afraid the country
will descend into chaos if he did. In reality many Libyans blame the
NTC (among others) for the effected chaos, and for the lack of the army and the
police force they should have organised. Maybe the leaders can help by explaining
why the NTC has
become 'powerless', 'helpless' and 'weak' only after they
(5): Lack of Security
Many Libyans, especially women, say security during the war
was fine. But after the NTC took over, that is after liberation was prematurely
declared, armed gangs appeared everywhere, robbing, beating and kidnapping citizens
including women, right in the open. Libyan families get stopped while in their
family cars, ordered to step out, robbed in broad day light, and left on the
road with nothing but tears in their eyes. According to a number of reports the
recent clashes in Sabha, in which nearly 150 Libyans were killed and 475 were
injured, were started after a dispute over a car. Some gangs desecrate holy sites,
others rob businesses and shops, and some kill on the spot. Rape was also reported
from various areas, and it was used as a weapon to spread "hatred" and "revenge"
during and after the war. No one really knows who these gangs are, or even where
they come from.
Why were these criminal gangs allowed to conduct their business in the open
and spread terror in a civil society that never saw such crimes before? Are
they intent to fail the revolution? If so, why cannot the government do something
about them? Why cannot the government do its job and protect the civilians by "all
necessary measures"? Many
Libyans say if the NTC cannot do its job, which the NTC openly admits, then they
need to seek assistance from the Libyan people they claim to represent, or else
The reason for this, the Libyans say, is that the NTC had
allowed members from Gaddafi's government to occupy places in the current interim
government, and that Gaddafi's loyalists will not rest until they see the failure of the revolution. The NTC has responded
by saying those loyalists who are found to be involved with corruption will be
removed, but they cannot remove hundreds of Gaddafi's officials who were not
implicated in "corruption". Well, at least this is the first official
admittance that "hundreds" of Gaddafi's officials still are in the
In a recent announcement in its website, the National Transitional Council
said that in response to a number of complaints they received from a number of
regarding some General Assembly candidates being Gaddafi's officials
(who were either members of the previous regime or the "revolutionary committees"),
they advised the public to send complaints to the representative
of the High Court (found in each court), or else email the complaints to
the email given below:
وردت أسئلة من بعض المدن بخصوص مترشحين للمؤتمر الوطني وهم من عناصر النظام
السابق او ممن كانوا من قيادات اللجان الثورية وكان التساؤل عن كيفية الطعن فى هؤلاء
المترشحين . وعلية نفيدكم انه يوجد ممثل للهيئة العليا في كل محكمة ويمكن أيضاً
إرسال الطعون والمعلومات مباشرة إلى هيئة النزاهة على البريد الالكتروني firstname.lastname@example.org
او رقم الهاتف 3616816-021 فاكس 3616818-021.
One can understand the difficulties faced, and no doubt the
NTC always needs a helping hand and support from all Libyans; but the Libyans
still do not understand why it is taking so long for this presumed "change"
to ever take place, and why it is taking this long to restore the essential services
and security to the country. The NTC asked for more time, and it did welcome
the "criticism" as a healthy sign of democracy,
while sympathetic Libyans acknowledged the NTC cannot control the "negative"
side-effects of war and of the armed militias, but not being able to restore
functions required for "life" is something only themselves they have
Some analysts questioned if the organisation was "shortsighted" in
its approach to lead the Libyans out of the "quagmire", since the
critics say the security of Libya should have been well "thought
attempting such destruction of infrastructure and central authority. During
situation the Libya Contact Group met
in Istanbul on the 15th of July 2011, allegedly to seek a political solution to
end the "civil war" in Libya – even though it never was a civil war,
the Libyans said. Reuters reported on the day before the meeting took place that "Among
items to be discussed in Istanbul will be a recommendation by a British-led team
planning post-conflict Libya for Gaddafi's security forces to be left intact
after a rebel victory in order to avoid errors made after the Iraq war"
Did anyone take any notice (from both the Contact Group and the people not contacted)
of the British team's recommendation?
Was there really a "stalemate" situation that required a political
solution? Was there a "political solution" to the (alleged) "civil
in Libya? The NTC was keen to admit that it has a big problem to deal
with, and that is how to disarm the heavily-armed Libyan population. Months after
the capital Tripoli was captured, Reuters (reuters.com/article/2011/11/05/us-libya-weapons)
"At one massive bunker complex visited by Reuters at
the weekend, thousands of rockets, mines, tank shells and even two Italian naval
torpedoes lay in neat stacks ready for transport – with not a guard in sight
. . . At another, larger ammo dump near Libya's second-largest city Benghazi,
a single fighter stood guard over a tract of land dotted with bunkers stretching
as far as the eye could see."
The UN too was keen to file a detailed report about the state
of lawlessness and the widespread of human rights abuses that are taking place
in (freed) Libya under the NTC, as well as about the spread of Libyan
weapons across the whole region, without giving reasons as to
why this had escaped its wise "attention" in the first place;
why it never provided a proven "exit strategy" from the start;
and why it had ended its "protection of civilians" so soon
while civilian homes were still being shelled.
"Making Progress in Libya: NTC must exercise authority and tackle militias" (politicsinspires.org/2012/03/libya-ntc-must-exercise-authority-and-tackle-militias).
Who is really controlling Libya? (aljazeera.com/programmes/insidestory/2012/01/20121279497910159.html).
(7): NTC's Lack of Transparency
Enjoying the newly-won "freedom of expression",
the Arabs and the Berbers were protesting in various towns across Libya including
Mesratha, Zuwarah, Nafousa, Tripoli, Sebha and Benghazi against NTC's lack of
transparency and lack of clear strategy. People say they were getting bored of "waiting",
governments reshuffled, loyalists sacked, controversial laws & declarations,
funds remained frozen for so long, talks of "civil war"
echoed by the leaders themselves, and contradictions were more usual than common.
For example, Moa'tasim was captured twice (the second time with his father),
Saifalislam arrested three times, and Khamis ('The-Fifth') killed five times.
But without a "body" one
can never be sure, as Khamis was reported on the 25th of February 2012 to be
still alive, with some Libyans saying somewhere around Regdalin. Saadi
and Mohammad were also (said) to have been arrested on the 22nd of August 2011,
but somehow Saadi still is in Niger and Mohammad lives in Algeria. When NTC's
spokesman was asked by the media to explain one of these contradictions, he said "escaped" -
presumably with some escaping more than once.
One of the biggest protests was in Benghazi on the
12th of December 2011, where tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets
to express their "frustration" with the way the NTC was handling
the transition to justice and freedom. The dangerous slogans "agents
of the enemy, the banks are empty" and "stealing the revolution" (and
the subsequent "correcting the path of the revolution") clearly
reflect the degree of anger and disappointment. On the following day the Guardian
reported that protesters have set up a "tent camp" in
Benghazi (in Maidan al-Shagara 'Tree Square'):
"We want to know who is the NTC," said Salwa
Bugaighis, a Benghazi lawyer who quit the government earlier this year. "We
want all the names." . . . Meetings are held in secret and voting records
are not released. This lack of transparency is compounded by a log jam in many
areas of government, from payment of salaries to rubbish collection and confusion
over who has control of Libya's security forces." guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/13/libyan-activists-demand-transparency-ntc
However, according to the Arabic site of the NTC, and as of
the 27th of January 2012, the introduction to the list of NTC members (see above
menu) speaks only of 33 members, while the list itself (below that) contains
43 members – still leaving 5 missing. No one from Zuwarah is listed among the
Around the 23rd of February 2012 a third list appeared in the organisation's
third website (ntc.gov.ly/NTCMembers.aspx),
which contained 76 members, including 11 from Tripoli,
7 from Benghazi, and one from Zuwarah.
(8): NTC Headquarters Attacked
On the 20th of January of Libya's first liberated year, 2012,
protesters in Benghazi, including those who still in the "Tent Camp",
broke their way into the headquarters of the National Transitional Government
(NTG) in Benghazi (or the NTC). Smashing Abdul Jalil's parked Toyota Land Cruiser
outside, the protesters threw
"stones" at the headquarters, broke glass windows, and even threw a grenade,
as they stormed the building and demanded the resignation of the transitional "government". According
to Reuters, "When Abdul Jalil . . . came out in an attempt to address
the crowd, some protesters hurled empty plastic bottles at him, prompting security
forces to fire tear gas." Reuters
also said that one protester came out of the building carrying a set of loudspeakers
and screaming: "Spoils of war!" However, according
to english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/01/21/189534.html, the protesters
also demanded "sharia law be the source of the North African
country’s future constitution", even though Article (1) of the Constitutional
Declaration says just that. Something somewhere rings the
bell; and let us hope someone somewhere answers the door.
(9): Human Rights Abuses, Torture & Persecution
in NTC's Libya
No doubt, it is neither fair nor right to criticise the National Transitional
Council (the sole representative of the aspirations of the Libyan people) for
actions committed by "others" including the rebels during the months of the war;
and the NTC did condemn the unacceptable
acts and urged all rebels to respect the law.
But shortly after the capture
of Tripoli and the premature declaration of liberation, the NTC was widely
criticised by various organisations
including Amnesty and the UN itself for "failing" to bring
the situation under control, and for the widespread human rights abuses "with
impunity", displacement of Libyan communities as a result of persecution,
arbitrary arrests, mass killings, looting, arms proliferations, and even "torture
to death" in free
Libya. Such atrocities, according to Amnesty, are "fuelling
insecurity and hindering the rebuilding of state institutions".
MSF pulled its staff out of Mesratha's
detention centres on Wednesday, after witnessing more than 100 cases of torture
committed by the rebels against inmates. More disturbing, according
to Reuters, MSF's "medical staff were being asked to patch up detainees
mid-way through torture sessions so they could go back for more abuse," and
that the Libyan Foreign Minister Ashour bin Khayyal told the agency (on the sidelines
of an African Union summit in Addis Ababa) that: "Gaddafi's remnants
committed actions that were an aggression to the revolution and to Libya and
they will now receive the treatment they deserve."
Following the statement
made by the aid agency Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) regarding the
torture of detainees in Mesratha by rebel forces, the NTC denied the claims and
said it knew nothing about the torture, and that torture is not the policy of
the National Transitional Council. The Libyans were indeed very pleased to hear
that torture is not one of the policies of the NTC.
Giving the NTC the benefit of the doubt, one needs to come
to terms with Amnesty International's reports, once more, as it has reported that officially
recognised entities were indeed involved in the acts of torture:
"The torture is being carried out by officially
recognized military and security entities as well by a multitude of armed militias
operating outside any legal framework . . . Amnesty International said that while
in some areas courts are reportedly processing civil cases, so-called “sensitive”
cases related to security and political issues are not being addressed. Instead
a range of mostly unofficial bodies, with no status in law, including so-called
“judicial committees”, have been carrying out interrogations in various detention
centres, outside the control of the judiciary." (amnesty.org/en/for-media/press-releases/libya-deaths-detainees-amid-widespread-torture-2012-01-26).
United Nations mission for Libya has expressed its concern to the country’s authorities
over the recent deaths of three people in a detention centre in the north-western
city of Misrata, saying it believes that the deaths may have resulted from torture.
The detainees died on 13 April in the Zaroug detention centre, which is controlled
by a committee under the supervision of the Ministry of Interior, the UN Support
Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said in a statement . . .
UNSMIL said it has also taken note of the cases of at least seven other people
who were tortured in the same detention facility. There have also been allegations
of torture and ill-treatment of detainees held by armed brigades in other detention
centres, particularly in the capital, Tripoli, and in the towns of Zawya, Zintan
and Misrata. The mission also voiced concern over the reported existence of some secret
detention facilities run
by the “brigades” and where detainees are at risk of torture."
These so-called "secret detention
reported previously by some Libyans to the Prime Minister, via the PMO's official
website, but it seems no one bothered to take the matter seriously, let alone
further. Events were left to continue, one after another to this day. The arbitrary
arrests, reminiscent of Gaddafi's revolutionary committees, were apparently executed
by secret cells (not to be confused with 'mystery cells') that come
out at night, the Libyans say, to terrorise free Libyans.
Their Western backers
now say they were let down by the NTC, and even said they are "embarrassed" by
the human rights abuses taking place under the authority of a government they
earlier supported with military might. Such outcomes are predictable
from the start, given the fact that the UN had failed to provide an exit strategy
for post-Gaddafi Libya, and given the fact
the UN had ended its military operations in Libya while wars were still
going on across the country.
One would presume
some kind of assistance is required to recover from the effected destruction
but unfortunately the Libyans were left to deal with the mess with no authority
in sight, while taking the blame for everything in consequence.
Before, it was the dictator's fault, they said; but after the dictator's
grotesque death, it is now the people's fault, the leaders say.
(11): Financial Corruption
During the wars, most Libyans and the world's media were busy digging Gaddafi's
financial files and the lavish life-style of his children. Today, officials are
just as implicated in squandering Libya's wealth. Most Libyans know that while
they were deprived of their own wealth, hundreds of millions of dinars
went missing from the country's treasury, which the NTC said it cannot find because
The "revolutionaries" were
awarded 4000 Libyan dinars each, with many of them fraudulently claiming the
same award several times (by registering their names and even other fictitious
names in more than one list). Many more civilians and infiltrators had joined
the rebel movement (after liberation was declared) apparently to claim the reward
family (regardless of the number of individuals in the family) was given 2000
Libyan dinars; and each Libyan citizen was give a mere 200 Libyan dinars (about
£100 - hardly enough to cover a good shopping for the week).
On the other hand, the self-appointed
leaders speak of hundreds of millions disappearing before their eyes,
with no one quite sure where the money went,
while at the same time distancing themselves from the responsibility for the
two thousand million US Dollars that disappeared, just like that. Local councils
too were reported to have been involved in massive financial corruption and theft.
Embassies across the world were also reported to have been involved. The "wounded"
saga of the Ministry of Health is, perhaps, one of the biggest
fraud scandals in Libyan history.
The way the
borders were left open and unguarded has also resulted in massive cross-border
trade in illegal commodities, such as weapons, drugs, alcohol, poisoned and outdated
food, Tramadol, petrol, cars, and even trafficking in "human
beings", all of which have further spread the infection of corruption to
dearly transform the Libyan society in many ways.
All in all, most Libyans agree that corruption now is far worse than ever
before. The later government of the GNC said
it had introduced the "Identification Number" to prevent fraudulent
claims of salaries, where one Libyan was reported by officials to have been claiming
more than 100 salaries (all for himself).
(12): NTC's Laws
The NTC was criticised from the start for issuing laws, decrees and press
releases without any consultation with the Libyan people. The installed
organisation gave itself the only legitimate right to represent the aspirations
of the Libyan people, but in reality it gave itself the sole right to decide,
legislate and implement whatever it sees right. Many of these laws, including
the Constitutional Declaration and Law 37, came under sharp criticism from the
In June 2012, the "Libyan Revolutionaries Union",
known as آثال , called for the NTC to stop issuing any further
unnecessary laws until the new government is elected (almanaralink.com/press/2012/06/18751/مؤسسة-اتحاد-ثوار-ليبياآثال-تطالب-الم/).
They have also stated that from the principle of transparency the NTC should
not appoint any of its members, employees or relatives to any official position
in the Libyan government, embassies or government firms and institutions; pointing
out that the NTC's job was to lead the organisation of running the country during
the vacuum created by the war, and not to govern the country itself
according to their own ideals.
On the 27th of June 2012, the Defence Minister Osama
Juwaili told Libyaherald that:
"The NTC are in the habit
of issuing laws without first referring to the government or to experts. They
are failing to consult with anybody”, he said. “These laws often conflict with
the work of the government and restrict its powers”. The minister chose
to cite again Law 11 as an example. “The NTC sent me a letter requesting us to
develop a law to govern the operations of the defence ministry and the armed
forces, and said we had just three days to do this. On the very same day, they
passed Law 11 which did just that, so what was the point of asking me at all?”
The NTC did not respond to repeated requests for comment on the minister’s criticisms."
Libya Herald, article: /defence-minister-juwaili-launches-scathing-attack-on-ntc/
United Nations: a good example of the "change"
referred to above is that while Gaddafi released all the "enemies of the
and civil criminals from prison, their places were later occupied by thousands
of the "enemies of the state", the dysfunctional state of New Libya.
Read more about what the UN now says here.
Amnesty International: for a list of the latest
reports and updates about Libya and human rights abuses in Libya, please see: amnesty.org/en/region/libya
The Forgotten Victims of Nato Strikes:
Amnesty International has documented 55 named civilians, including 16 children
and 14 women, who were killed in air-strikes in Tripoli (5), Zlitan (3), Majer
(34) Sirte (9) and Brega (4). Twenty other civilians were reportedly killed
in Brega (2), Surman (13) and Bani Walid (5). Read
the full report here.
HRW: The Human Rights Watch Report: "is
the most extensive examination to date of civilian casualties caused by NATO’s
air campaign . . . The most serious incident occurred in the village of Majer,
160 kilometres east of Tripoli, the capital, on August 8, 2011, when NATO air
strikes on two family compounds killed 34 civilians and wounded more than 30." Download
the full report.
UN-authorised forces attack on Libyan
it was reported that some of the "acts" committed by the forces implementing
the no-fly zone "may
amount to crimes against humanity", when the forces bombed a number
of civilian targets as listed in the above reports including the Libyan state
TV al-Jamahiriya on July the 30th 2011, in which 3 journalists were killed and
between 15 and 21 more were wounded . UN Security Council Resolution 1738 (2006)
condemns acts of violence against peaceful journalists during conflict (en.rsf.org/libya-nato-attacks-on-national-tv-01-08-2011,40729.html
To Diplomatic Representatives of Libya In Your Country: Amnesty International
"Dear Ambassador, I am writing to express
my concern about ongoing human rights violations committed by armed militias
in Libya. I call on the Libyan authorities to rein in the armed militias, including
to: Investigate and bring to justice militia members responsible for human rights
abuses, including arbitrary detention, torture, extra-judicial executions, the
forcible displacement of the Tawargha, the Mashashiya and other communities,
and other human rights abuses; Take effective action to stop the repetition of
such abuses; Ensure that communities displaced by militias, such as the Tawargha,
are able to return home and are given adequate assistance to rebuild their lives,
including compensation and assistance in reconstruction." Source: mde190012012en.
The Guardian: "Dozens of African migrants
were left to die in the Mediterranean after a number of European military units
apparently ignored their cries for help" (guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/08/nato-ship-libyan-migrants ).
The Guardian: "The European rapporteur
charged with investigating the case of 63 African migrants who were "left
to die" in the Mediterranean last year has warned those responsible could
end up in court" (guardian.co.uk/world/2012/mar/29/migrant-boat-disaster-legal-action).
Tifinagh at the headquarters of the NTC in Benghazi, 20 August 2011.
Probably the first official use of Tifinagh in Libya as a political
tool to manipulate the Berbers to fight for 'Justice'. Except that the Berbers have been 'fighting' for a
long time, and still are, without achieving what they desire: 'Equality'.
When the Berbers suddenly saw Tifinagh letters decorating
one of the walls of the NTC's Headquarters in Benghazi, before which
the transitional leaders delivered their historic press releases to the watching
world, the Berbers thought the tyrannical era of identity denial was finally
over; the adrenaline flowed to power the revolution against fear;
and jubilations rose to the heavens with celebratory fire.
But then the short-lived lifeline came to a sudden end, when the very same Tifinagh
letters disappeared from the wall after the war came
to an end; followed by the second blow, delivered via the NTC's Constitutional
Declaration, in which Arabic language was once more made the only official language
in Libya. The Berbers' first instinct was "shock", and still shaken
and disoriented from the effects of the devastating war, they sped to the capital
and protested with banners of "marginalisation" and "shame".
In contrast to the staged media coverage they received when their favours
were still needed during the war, the world this time went silent as it did before
the war. The name "Amazigh" disappeared
from the news, and it seemed the wheel of misfortune continues to spin around
the same empty circle. This triggered more protests, debates,
and dozens more of Facebook pages in which the Berbers expressed their outcry
for being abandoned,
"betrayed", and even felt being "used" to effect no more
than regime change. The
Berbers patiently still hope the unjust Constitutional Declaration
is temporary and that the official one will be different from the previous ones,
in some way.
Berbers say they are not a minority; but the proud natives
of Libya and North Africa overall.
Berber February Uprising:
After the uprising started on the 15th of February 2011,
the Berbers quickly joined the rebel movement, where Zuwarah and Nafousa Mountain
together with Zawya and Mesratha were among the first to enter into military
confrontation with the Libyan government in the west, and later on were the first
to enter and capture crucial Tripoli.
In a matter of few months a number of
Berber initiatives, blogs and websites sprung up in Libya and abroad, to
document what they thought was an "historic revolution". Lacking any
government funding, home-made schools were created in Yefren and Jado to teach
Berber language using Tifinagh; newsletters and publications in Tamazight were
widely circulated without fear of persecution; and a radio and a TV station broadcasting
from rebel-held areas in Nafousa Mountain hit the stagnant air.
The symbol of the Berbers' struggle for "free freedom" appeared
together with the unofficial Berber flag on top of buildings, on car roofs,
in websites, and carried by protesters and fighters alike in Zuwarah,
Nafusa, Ubari, Mesratha and Benghazi. The Zed also appeared on the "Golden
Fist" inside Bab al-Aziziya Complex after it was entered by Berber and Arab
rebels on the 23rd of August 2011.
These scenes may have now disappeared from memory
and faded away from the latest news, but to the Berbers they were moments they
will cherish for revolutions to come.
Some Arab Libyans were
baffled by the new flag seen waving in the air next to the "independence" flag
(of the corrupt monarchy that refused to recognise the Berbers officially), with
some accusing them of being "separatists", just as others
had said before them. But the majority of Libyans welcomed the new Berber flag,
the mere symbol of one's identity and culture, and they together got on with
the job at hand - liberating Libya from tyranny and "collective
used by despots to oppress and suppress dissent, that never disappears!
The Name of Libya:
Gaddafi had introduced the word "Arab" to the
official name of the country "Libya" and declared there were no ethnic
communities living in Libya. In this sense he was right, because the Berbers
are the "natives of Libya" and not an ethnic minority. During the
transitional period when the war was still going on, it was reported by Nafusa
NTC members that the issue of the name came up during one of the private
meetings of the NTC. There are no official statements published regarding this
particular issue, but some NTC members who attended the discussion said some
Berber representatives walked out of the meeting when the transitional
council recommended the inclusion of the word "Arab" in
the new name of Libya, saying this will not represent all the communities of
Eventually, it was said, they had agreed
not to include the word "Arab" in the new name, and so regarding
the matter of the name the Berbers have scored victory. Moreover, it emerged
later that some members of the NTC had also opposed the inclusion of "Tamazight" in
their Constitutional Declaration of August 2011, and regarding this matter the
Berbers were defeated, just as they were before. Shortly after the
premature liberation of Libya, Mr. Turbel attracted the attention of the Berbers,
when he was reported to
have made some "anti-Amazigh" remarks regarding the Berber
protesters who took to the streets of Tripoli demanding constitutional recognition
of identity - their own kind of indigenous events; as he was also
said to have "verbally threatened members of the NTC who were calling
for Tamazight to be given equal status to Arabic in the draft Libyan constitution."
The forbidden word Tamazight never made it to the Constitutional
Declaration, and there was no mention of it nor of its alternatives (like 'Berber')
in the liberation declaration, delivered by Advisor Abduljalil.
NTC Recognises Minorities Rights (With a Twist): NTC's Visions
of New Libya:
Right from the start of the National Transitional Council
in Benghazi, the NTC declared that new Libya would be for all ethnic groups of
the Libyan society, and promised "minorities" their full and equal
rights, but without explicit mention of the forbidden appellation 'Berber'.
'The draft manifesto-vision included references to "minorities', 'ethnic
groups', 'ethnicity' and the like, but it never specifically talked about the
The following is the first vision published by the NTC in
its first website (ntclibya.org/arabic/vision-of-libya/).
Then a second version of the vision was later published in its second website
There was no explanation provided as to why a second version appeared in the
website nor why some "sensitive changes" were
made to the second version, such as the removal of
the word "language". The reader can follow the above links which lead
to the archived pages at https://web.archive.org/ .
The URL of the second version
is now redirecting to: ntc.gov.ly/Default.aspx. To read a copy of
the two versions please see the two saved copies below, or follow the provided
links to archive.org. For example the following red-coloured words in the first
vision were removed from the second:
The first published copy:
فهي دولة تحترم حقوق الإنسان ومبادئ وقواعد المواطنة وحقوق
الأقليات والفئات المستضعفة فالإنسان في ظل دولة المؤسسات والقانون ، مخلوق حر طليق
يتمتع بكل ميزات المواطنة بغض النظر عن اللون أو الجنس أو اللغة أو الاعتقاد أو
العرق أو الوضع الاجتماعي
Translation: "Libya is a
country that respects human rights, the principles of nationality, the rights
of minorities and the weak, and that a human under the law is a free "creature" enjoying
all advantages of citizenship regardless of
colour or race or language or belief or
ethnicity or social status."
"ولكل فرد التمتع بحقوق المواطنة الكاملة بغض النظر عن اللون أو الجنس أو
العرق أو الوضع الاجتماعي." Translation: "Every
individual has the right to enjoy the full rights of citizenship regardless of
colour, race, ethnicity or social status."
First of all, the use of the word "creature" by the NTC is somewhat
philosophical. Secondly, the association of the word 'minorities' with the 'weak'
is self expressive. The red-coloured word "language" (which
in practice refers to Berber language more than anything else) was removed completely
from the second version. The above Article of the Manifesto-Vision can in theory
guarantee Tamazight ('Berber')
and other Libyan languages: "the full advantages of citizenship",
and thus "nationality", which in practice would make Berber language
100% equal to Arabic and thus its "implied" official recognition.
The "loophole" was
closed shortly afterwards, by publishing the second version, which it later disappeared
too; and to make sure it stays that way, the ensued Constitutional Declaration
(CD) sealed the subject by denying the Berbers any mention, let alone official
One can only be sure of the intentions once the Constituition Committee publishes
its official constitution some time after the elections of 7/7. However, the
draft Constitutional Declaration, the Guardian says, seems to have been influenced
by planning advice from the UN, the US and the UK (guardian.co.uk/)!
Other words and phrases that were also changed between the
two versions include
"belief" (also removed), and "الانغلاق
('cultural closure'), which was changed to "العزلة الثقافية"
('cultural isolation'), as if the Imazighen do seek isolation when they were
openly calling for "inclusion" into
the fabrics of the Libyan society. The following are the two versions of the
Tamazight As An Official Language & The
The TNC's "Constitutional Declaration" openly denies the official
status of Berber Language. It does however grant Berber language a "national
status". The NTC had announced on the 3rd of August 2011 a 37-point interim "Constitutional
Declaration" to provide a framework for the transition to an elected government,
and to call for a constitutional assembly within eight months. Article 01 includes
that little illusive phrase "power in the hands of people".
So, what does this new "Constitutional Declaration" say?
Here is an actual copy of Article 01:
"Libya is an independent and democratic country, in it people are
the source of power, its capital is Tripoli, its religion is Islam, Islamic Sharia
is its primary source of legislation, and the country pledges the freedom to
practice religious ceremonies for non-Muslims, and its official language is the
Arabic language, and the country Libya guarantees the cultural rights for all
the components of the Libyan society and their languages are considered national
First of all it appears that Article (6) of the Constitutional
Declaration violates the Constitutional Declaration itself by declaring all Libyans
are "equal" regardless of "language", while at the same time
Article (1) declares "Arabic" the only official language in Libya.
Reading through these words one senses the article was drafted to please the
minorities of Libya, rather than give them their full constitutional rights
and acknowledge them equally as one of the official peoples of Libya - of revolutionary
Libya. It says
"they" can "practice" their cultural rights,
but what about recognising them first as
"human beings" who have their own identity, not "creatures",
which both Gaddafi and Algeria attempted in vain to Arabise?
Why cannot both languages be equal and equally recognised in New Democratic
Libya? Why cannot we all live equally happy thereafter, regardless of language
or colour, just as they say? The NTC recently, speaking to its European partners,
said Libya will be a model of democracy in the whole region and that its democracy
will be similar to the kind of democracy that exists in Europe. However, one
cannot resist the temptation to ask: how many kinds of democracies are there
out there? As
far as most people know, there is only one democracy: 'people's government'.
New Libya should be 100% democratic and its government should represent all the
people of Libya. All Libyans, including their leaders, should put their differences
aside and work together for free and democratic Libya that is fully inclusive
of all Libyans.
But downgrading a language to a national status indicates the language is
not indigenous to that country, as in nationalising a foreign
company, or, as one Berber recently commented, foreigners who had acquired Libyan "nationality" in
recent years cannot be compared to Berbers who had been in Libya for thousands
of years. This means that nationalising something or someone usually indicates
the foreign nature of that something or someone. Fair enough; "but they
are not aliens", the Berbers say.
In principle therefore speaking of minorities rights
and protection of minorities makes the Berbers feel alien in their
own home and more so feel like "creatures" living in a "conservation
where tourists can flock in to have a glimpse at the fast-dying clan.
Minorities all over the world, basically, are humans, dignified humans at that,
and they should have full human rights including the right to self govern as
stated by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,
"if they choose so".
The Imazighen of Libya, and of North Africa, do not seek the "right" to
use or "practice" their language, and they are well capable of protecting
themselves and their language(s), as they did for tens of thousands of years.
But what they are foremost campaigning for is the constitutional recognition
of their "Identity",
which naturally includes the recognition of their Berber language Tamazight as
one of the official languages of Libya. Thus Imazighen reject
the term "minority" and
instead demand from the NTC to recognise them as "people", as "Libyan
people", and as "the native people of Libya". What sort of norms
that call the "majority" Moroccan Berbers "minority" in
their own home?
In addition to the fact that the Berbers in Libya will certainly not be able
to reach the majority required to win anything (democratically), Fathi Salem
Abu Zakhar, an organiser of the Amazigh conference in Tripoli, says "Language
rights are not a matter that is subject to a vote . . . We want the government,
and the coming government, to grasp that the language is part of the Libyan equation" (uk.reuters.com/article/2011/09/26/uk-libya-berber-language-idUKTRE78P4RJ20110926).
If unprotected constitutionally a language may eventually die. On average,
one language goes extinct every week in this modern age, often because
of governments' open neglect. Libyans need to be
clear about one thing: there are so many countries in the world which have a
number of official languages without these countries being divided nor ruled
by imperial powers. Democratic countries
usually declare a number of languages as official languages, like in India where
23 languages are listed as official languages in the constitution. While dictatorial
countries usually dictate one language (always the ruling language) and downgrade
all others (often the indigenous languages). And there are countries that do
not list any official language at all, probably to avoid the issue in a different
Open Letter From The Libyan Amazigh Congress To The
the Libyan Berber Congress (ALT: Agraw Alibi
n Tmazight) wrote an open letter to the chairman and members of the National
Transitional Council (NTC) and to the Executive Board on the 17th of September
2011, praising the struggle of the Libyan people for freedom and calling for
the official recognition of Tamazight Rights.
The letter, titled (حول استحقاقات الحق الامازيغي في ليبيا : on the merits
of the Berber right in Libya), contained a 14-point declaration outlining:
the current sufferings of the Berber communities which threaten their physical
existence and aim to Arabise their identity;
the Berbers' resistance to the tyranny of the old regime and hence were among
the first to rise up during the February Uprising;
the unity of the Libyan people regardless of race, language, religion or
colour; the need to rewrite Libyan history away from "racism" and "personal
gains", as most of the injustices suffered by the Berbers were due to "an
upside-down reading of history";
the importance of the Berber issue as a national issue for all Libyans and
especially so for those who speak Tamazight ('Berber language');
individual and group rights are basic human rights and not "gifts" that
can be granted;
the Berbers' rights include cultural, linguistic, religious, political, legal,
administrative, developmental, educational, and media rights;
the recognition by all Libyans that the time for justice has come, at a
great price of sacrifice;
the constitutionalisation and nationalisation of the Berbers' rights is
a primary demand the Berbers cannot let go and will not bargain;
The Berbers' rights shall not be grouped with terms like "minorities" or
"majorities" as these rights are a fundamental part of any human society;
the Berbers' rights are rights of the Libyan people as a whole, since there
are no Libyan Arabs or Berbers, but all there-is is (one) Libyan
people who came to speak a number of languages;
mature leadership and recognition of the Berbers' rights is essential to
the stability of Libya, as pitfalls can yield severe repercussions and therefore
curtailing the freedom of expression ought not be confused with respect and
peaceful life with dignity and cooperation.
The usual "Foreign Agenda" is
back on the menu.
First of all, Libya needs peace and all Libyans need to know that only
peace can defeat war. In theory, the NTC did
welcome the protesters' cries for transparency, published policies and equal
representation in the transitional government. But in practice, whenever
protesters take to the streets they were labeled by all sorts of names, including
sleeper cells, agents to sabotage the revolution, enemies of the state, and of
course the historic "agents of foreign agendas" (all of which were
used by various despots to suppress the voices of their own people, without
addressing the issue instead). Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets
of Benghazi, whom we all know are not Berbers, demanding transparency and clear
policy from the NTC among other revolutionary "things".
Berber protesters said that during the revolution they were rightly hailed "revolutionaries" and "lions
of Nafousa", but now they were sent back to being agents of foreign
agendas. Why this sudden and sad change when the people remained
the same and still are shaken, disoriented, and healing
their deepest wounds? Was it that difficult for the leaders to be merciful
with words and approach the issue with honesty and talk about the
source of all the misunderstanding: talk about why not officialise "Tamazight"?
The Berbers would be very happy to hear the government talk about these issues,
in the open. But instead the usual denial and silence dominates the scene.
All Libyans need to know that the Berbers fully support the NTC and what they
said it represents, as they have always called for justice, freedom, dignity
and loving peace. The NTC must rest assured that the Berbers took a leading role
in the revolution and that they will continue supporting the revolution for "dignity"
but this must not be confused with revolution for "integration", "disappearance" and "inclusion".
Mr. Abdel Jalil in the above interview does not provide any evidence for
the alleged foreign link between the "foreign powers" (presumably the
same as the foreign powers that assisted the NTC to power) and
activists" (who have been peacefully demanding no more than their basic
human rights). Where is the evidence for this foreign agenda?
Nonetheless, the honourable leader did make the inflammatory and unnecessary
comments, which everyone agrees serve no "positive" purpose. He starts
by telling his Berber brothers and protesters that "in
Libya we have three authorities: judicial, legislative and executive, and that
the highest judicial post was given to the Amazigh". This is a reference
to the appointment of judge Kamal Dehan, a Berber from Zuwarah, as the Supreme
Judge in Libya.
Secondly, Mr. Abdel Jalil, likewise Prime Minister el-Keib, so far has managed
to avoid speaking about the issue of constitutionalising Tamazight "identity" and "language" as
the primary cause of the protests, and instead easily criticised the ministerial
demands of the Berber protesters as "euphoric reactions" deviated from "the
path" and activated by "foreign political agenda" from outside
Libya. It would have been more reasonable and responsible if the NTC came
out, met the people, and exercised the benefits of democracy by explaining to
people the issues at hand. Cannot we talk first before we start arguing? Aren't
we supposed to walk before we run?
Of course, there is always the possibility of misunderstanding, since the
definition principle implies "Arab Revolution" from the Arab perspective;
the Berbers should not have a perspective of their own, and should not have an
identity of their own; and hence they should integrate,
he says - presumably integration into another's freedom. A kind
of sub-freedom expected from the "good Berbers", whom
Abdul Jalil says are "his friends". But those Berbers who
speak of unconditional freedom (which his ethnic group fully enjoy with the aid
of foreign powers) must "disappear",
he says. He also said they had meetings with "intelligent Berbers" over
the Berbers' rights and that only time will show the services "will
for them in the future; but those who are (presumably) manipulated by foreign
agendas have left the meeting room, and those too he says have "his
This means that the Berbers now have been divided into two classes of Berbers: "intelligent
Berbers" (who will be rewarded later); and "foreign agents" (who
must "disappear") - not an intelligent catalyst to restore peace to
a war-torn society. Why cannot the honourable Leader tell his people right now
what services will be provided later to the good Berbers ? Why has no
one so far from the NTC had the courage to address the issue of "constitutionalising
Tamazight" in the open?
The NTC leader also advised the Berbers to avoid "seclusion",
despite their exclusion by his draft
constitution, and despite the Berbers' main demand being inclusion in
the first place. Why take things
out of proportion at this volatile stage, honourable leaders, when simple recognition
of identity is the "magic word"? All Berbers are strongly urged to
remain united with their Arab and Tebu brothers and sisters, as they have always
been, and resist all attempts to divide. Libya must stay united for freedom and
justice (for all Libyans, equally). They must do this peacefully and only through "diligent
El-Keib Speaks to Libya TV (05/12/2011).
El-Keib Speaks About The Marginalisation of
The Berbers & Admits "Misunderstanding":
In the above video the interim Libyan Prime Minister Andulrahim el-Keib
was asked to share his views about the sensitive issues of the Berbers, "marginalisation", "and
so on". The following are the main points touched in
relation to the "appointment of ministers"
and the "foreign agenda" saga. He starts by saying he has Berber friends
from Zuwarah and Nafusa. Those who speak the language of the "Amazighiya"
are part of the Libyan people, he adds, and that he remembers Albarouni, Yahya
Mammer and other martyrs from the Berber Mountain.
He then continues by admitting there was "misunderstanding", which
he says was due to lack of time, but never was
"intentional", and despite his respect to those
"who say what they say" he is not one of those who would support "marginalisation". Regarding
his refusal to attend the Berber Festival in Kabaw (in Nafusa Mountain), he said
he did not go because the methods used [by the Berber protesters] were "exaggerated"
and were "expressed in a way he never saw before".
He also thanked those "who stood with them" - a kind of confusing
signal since it could imply that there are those who "stand" against
them - not
to say anything of those who "stood
up" for themselves, for their constitutional rights
and for equal recognition by the law.
As for "foreign agendas intervening in Libya's affairs", he replied
by stating that "expression should be civilised", and he would rather
not comment on the issue, but there are some people who were protesting outside
his office but "he
does not know who they were". Well, they are persecuted Berbers.
Apart from that, he made no statements regarding the constitutionalisation
of Tamazight, the officialisation of the Berber identity,
or about any of the important issues the Berbers had protested about, except
the appointment of ministers in his temporary government, often used to divert
attention from the true demands of the Berber communities across the region.
Silence is one of the tools of marginalisation.
When will the time come for the leaders to speak about the issue of "constitutionalisation"
of both Berber identity and language? The people are ready to
listen, and they protest to listen, but the leaders so far refuse to say what
the people would like to hear.
World Amazigh Congress Criticises The NTC For Failing
To Pay Attention To The Berbers' Persecution:
When Fathi Ben Khlifa, president of the Amazigh World Congress, was asked
about "his position"
in relation to the NTC, he replied saying that his view of the NTC was "positive"
right down to the liberation of Tripoli, but after liberation people were supposed
to stand united and elect a new council, in order to establish legitimacy before
dialogue begins. His opinion, he said, was not welcomed by many. It is illogical,
he adds, to exploit the crisis to impose "ourselves on our people"
as the only option. The conduct of the majority members of the NTC was illegitimate
and wrong, he says, indicating either "misunderstanding" or "ill-intention".
He also pointed out that no one has the right to accuse the Libyans of being
unable to lead themselves, just to jump in the power chair. The constitutional
declaration, election law, transitional government and the national army are
all illegitimate, void and would lead to problems, the president said. According
to his view the NTC is a "temporary council" and not
"transitional government", and hence their inability
to bring stability to the country. Is it reasonable for some current members
who run the country not to have even "primary" or
"secondary" education, he asked? In relation to the Constitutional
Declaration he says it is not "just", does not serve equality, and
even attacks the existence of the Berbers.
In one of his most recent interviews, Ben Khlifa clarifies some
of the issues and accusations regarding the Congress, including "Foreign
Agenda", "Arab Spring", "Federalism" and "who is
funding the Congress".
To be fairer to the truth, the Amazigh World Congress can also be considered
as an illegitimate organisation simply because it was setup privately by a group
of Berberists without any consultation with the Berber people of North Africa.
The members and the president of the congress were not elected by the Berber
people, and therefore all declarations and statements made by the congress and
its president are in no way should be taken as representative of the Berber
This means that when the president of the congress declares that the Berbers
of Libya should hand over their weapons only to a legitimate body officially
recognised to collect weapons from the Libyan people, he is only stating his
"personal opinion", since no one knows what the majority of the Berbers
feel regarding this issue. But unfortunately this distinction was never made.
The Berbers of Libya are urged to stop fighting their Libyan brothers and
sisters no matter what. If they have an issue with the NTC then they need to
take up the issue with the NTC. Libya is now officially declared liberated,
and fighting Gaddafi's loyalists, or others, should be carried out in coordination
with the NTC and the Libyan Army.
The Berbers of Libya need to organise themselves
and work with the government and help
achieve their demands as well as help restore peace to our beloved Libya via
peaceful means. Final decisions must await the publication of the final Constitution.
Having said this, this does not mean that one is afraid of revolution, whatever
the term nowadays means, but all it means is that the leaders need to be realistic
in their approach to resolve, and work towards achieving "solutions" instead
of "isolation", inclusion instead of exclusion, and winning friends
instead of making more enemies.
One needs to lead by example, since confrontation can
only lead to further destruction; and even then being a minority one finds it
hard to imagine how victory can ever be achieved in a battle that could only
lead to "civil war". One would think it is best
for everyone if the leaders instead focus on initiating diplomacy with
the governments in question to secure the rights they claim they campaign for
- after all that is exactly what skilled politicians ought to do: employ diplomatic
and diligent dialogue.
The Berbers wherever they are must remember that only peace and science can
lead forward. The Berbers must understand the current turmoil in its regional
context to the best of their common interest - the stability and prosperity of
their future. They need to open their eyes and avoid the lurking consequences
NTC's Justice Minister, Mohammed Alallagi, assures the Berbers
their "constitutional rights", 55 days after the unjust
Constitutional Declaration was imposed on the Libyan people.
The history of Libya according to the website of the NTC
showing what the NTC called "Arab invasions"
of Libya (الغزوات العربية) that took place in 647 AD. See original at archive.org