UN mission in Libya calls for parliamentary vote on December 24
TUNIS, October 30 (Reuters) – The United Nations mission in Libya said on Saturday that the country’s parliament should amend its electoral law to hold presidential and legislative elections on December 24, as originally planned in a peace plan.
The House of Representatives (HoR), Libyan parliament based in the east, has enacted separate laws for a presidential election on December 24 and a parliamentary election to be held at a later, unspecified date.
The election wrangling, planned as part of a wider peace campaign that also brought a transitional unity government to power, threatened to derail Libya’s efforts to end a decade of chaos and violence.
Critics of the HoR, as well as rival Libyan political institutions, have denounced its electoral laws as intended to preserve the power of the chamber leadership.
Others accused the critics of seeking to delay or hijack the elections.
“Respect for the principle of simultaneous presidential and legislative elections on December 24, 2021 is necessary to preserve the integrity of the electoral process,” said UNSMIL, the United Nations mission in Libya.
He said simultaneous elections on that date were also necessary to ensure the credibility of the national vote and acceptance of its results.
He also called for an amendment to allow candidates who already hold public office to suspend their positions in order to compete in the elections.
Libya has seen little peace or stability since the 2011 NATO-backed uprising against Muammar Gaddafi. It split in 2014 between the warring camps of the East and the West with rival administrations based in each region.
The latest attempt at peace follows last year’s failure of an offensive by eastern commander Khalifa Haftar on the capital Tripoli. A ceasefire has since been respected, although some of its provisions are still not respected.
Reporting by Angus McDowall
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