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13 September 2011

Libya: Transitional Council seeks moderate civil state


The World Bank officially recognized the ruling National Transitional Council as Libya's government today in an announcement saying the Bank has been asked to help lead efforts to restore vital services and develop jobs programs as the country tries to return to normal after a six-month war. The chief of Libya's revolutionary movement told thousands of cheering Libyans in Tripoli yesterday to strive for a civil, democratic state. It was a theme discussed by the TNC’s political affairs minister Fahti Mohammed Baja in remarks to reporters during a press conference at an international conference on interreligious and intercultural understanding underway in Munich, Germany under the joint sponsorship of the Catholic archdiocese and the Sant’Egidio Community. “We want a civil state, we want a democratic state,” said Baja.

The establishment of a functioning judiciary is a cornerstone of the project. “There will be civil courts,” he said, “people can go and complain to the courts and ask for their rights through the judicial system.” Baja also promised civil and legal protections against purges of Gaddafi supporters, saying, “Even the followers of Gaddafi – if their hands are not filthy with blood – just leave them.” Some Gaddafi supporters have been detained, he admitted. “Now, in Tripoli, we [have arrested] some [Gaddafi supporters], because these people are dangerous,” explained Baja, adding that those who have been taken into custody had dealings with mercenaries and access to cash. He specified, however, that many former supporters have been confined to their houses or taken to holding areas.

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