TRIPOLI, March 5 (Reuters) – Civic leaders from Libya’s
eastern Cyrenaica province will on Tuesday launch a push for
regional autonomy, posing a new challenge to the country’s
fragile cohesion after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.
Five thousand people are due to attend an inaugural
“Congress of the People of Cyrenaica” near the eastern city of
Benghazi where they will set out a proposal for Libya to be
transformed into a federal state, one of the organisers said.
TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Two British journalists working for Iran’s Press TV who were detained late last month in Libya are suspected of being spies, the head of the militia which is holding them said on Sunday.
Faraj al-Swelhi, commander of the Swelhi brigade, said they had found among the journalists’ possessions official Libyan documents, equipment used by the Israeli military and footage of them firing weapons.
Libya’s leadership has apologised after armed men smashed the graves of British and Italian soldiers killed during World War Two, in an act of vandalism that appeared to be directed against non-Muslims. Amateur video footage of the attack, posted on social networking site Facebook, showed men casually kicking over headstones in a war cemetery and using sledge hammers to smash a metal and stone cross.
TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Libya’s leadership has apologised after armed men smashed the graves of British and Italian soldiers killed during World War Two, in an act of vandalism that appeared to be directed against non-Muslims.
Amateur video footage of the attack, posted on social networking site Facebook, showed men casually kicking over headstones in a war cemetery and using sledge hammers to smash a metal and stone cross.
TUNIS (Reuters) – Western and Arab nations mounted the biggest diplomatic push in weeks to end Syria’s crackdown on the opposition on Friday, but the talk in a marble-lined Tunisian hotel risked being overtaken by the increasingly vicious armed conflict on the ground.
Foreign ministers from more than 50 countries in Tunis for the inaugural “Friends of Syria” meeting marshaled international condemnation of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and ratcheted up the pressure on him to step dcown.
ALGIERS (Reuters) – When Moncef Marzouki, a former dissident transformed by the “Arab Spring” into Tunisia’s president, paid an official visit to Algeria on Sunday, red and white Tunisian flags flew from lamp-posts in his honor.
Just two days earlier, another former dissident and leading figure of Tunisia’s revolution had been barred from entering. Sihem Bensedrine was allowed into the country after a seven-hour wait only after protests from fellow human rights activists.
ALGIERS (Reuters) – Muammar Gaddafi’s daughter has expressed concern that a United Nations commission looking into human rights violations during the Libya conflict is not trying to find out who killed her father.
The circumstances of Gaddafi’s killing on October 20 last year remain unclear. Footage of his last moments, bloodied and dazed as his captors dragged him along a road, marked the grisly success of the revolt against his rule, even though many Libyans said they were glad to see the end of a violent dictator.
ALGIERS (Reuters) – The daughter of Libya’s former leader Muammar Gaddafi asked on Tuesday to make representations to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to help her brother Saif al-Islam, who is in a Libyan jail awaiting trial on rape and murder charges.
Aisha Gaddafi wants to hand information to the court about the welfare of Saif al-Islam, who has also been indicted by the ICC on charges of crimes against humanity dating from Libya’s civil war last year.
ALGIERS (Reuters) – Algeria’s government will ignite an explosion of unrest if it tries to rig a parliamentary election in May to keep its grip on power, according to the leader of an Islamist opposition party vying for a big share of the vote.
Algeria, a big energy exporter, is the only North African state largely untouched by the “Arab Spring” upheavals in the region but the election could still act as a catalyst for protests over unemployment, a lack of housing and a government many people feel does not listen to them.
ALGIERS (Reuters) – Behind Libya’s flare-up of violence and protests in the past five days lies a quandary.
How do you share out power in the new Libya when the jumble of tribes, militias and interest groups do not trust each other and, even worse, when the people supposed to be acting as neutral referees are widely mistrusted?