South Asia and Beyond

Libya Forms Interim Government, Looks Towards Peace

Libya appears to be slowly moving towards peace and an end to a decade of civil war. The Libyan parliament meeting in the coastal town of Sirte, midway between the rival power centres in Tripoli and Benghazi, voted in favour of a government of national unity headed by Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah. It will continue until December when presidential and legislative elections will be held. The effort is being driven by the United Nations with Secretary-General Antonio Guterres describing it as “an important step towards restoring unity, stability, security and prosperity”.

Dbeibeh has a controversial past. He was a follower of the late Muammar Gaddafi and there are suspicions about his lack of integrity, which extends to money laundering and funding the Muslim Brotherhood. His administration replaces the government of national accord. He has eight months to fix Libya’s crippling economic woes including ensuring that rebel general Khalifa Haftar based in Benghazi, does not throw a spanner in the works.