Libyan PM urges holding polls to end crisis

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Libyan Prime Minister Abdul-Hamid Dbeibah has stressed the importance of holding elections as soon as possible to end the country’s current crisis.

“The solution to the current crisis, as well as peace and reconciliation in the country, can be achieved by holding elections soon,” Dbeibah said in a speech during the National Reconciliation Forum in the town of Riqdalin, some 120 km west of the capital Tripoli.

“There is a political class that took over Libya in the past years and seeks to extend (the mandate) and bring back war and conflict,” he said, noting that he had started consultations with local parties to come up with a plan to hold elections and a referendum on the constitution, reports Xinhua news agency.

Dbeibah also accused the House of Representatives (Parliament) of falsely issuing resolutions and “being responsible for the conflict and bloodshed”.

The House of Representatives on February 10 unanimously voted for Fathi Bashagha, the former Interior Minister, as the country’s new Prime Minister, replacing Abdul-Hamid Dbeibah.

Shortly after the vote, Bashagha said that he is “confident that Dbeibah’s government will hand over power and adhere to the democratic path”.

However, Dbeibah confirmed that his government will remain in office until elections are held, and he will only hand over office to an elected government.

The Libyan parliament withdrew confidence from Dbeibah’s government in September 2021 and kept it as a caretaker government.

General elections in Libya had been scheduled for December 24, 2021, but were postponed indefinitely over technical and legal issues, according to the High National Elections Commission.

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