Libya: Muslim Brotherhood Insist on Blocking Presidential Elections

The statements of Amari Zayed, a member of the Libyan Presidency Council,  who is close to the extremist Shura Councils,  reflects that the Islamists and their international allies, Turkey and Britain in particular, insist on holding parliamentary elections only, and that manoeuvres to obstruct the election of a president for the country will continue.

Amari Zayed stressed during his meeting with the Turkish ambassador to Libya, Sarhat Aksen, that the solution to the Libyan crisis lies in holding parliamentary elections on the basis of the constitutional declaration and the current election law, to choose a new parliament that unifies institutions and elects a national government that extends its control over all parts of the country, stressing the need to respect all parties election results and commitment to them.

He said, “Holding elections is possible based on the municipal council elections that have taken place in a large number of municipalities, and with the concerted efforts of sincere people, Libya will be able to pass this stage and restore legitimacy to the people through the ballot boxes.”

Ammari’s statements indicate a clear intention to jump over the demands of holding general presidential and legislative elections. The Islamists ’insistence on refusing to hold presidential elections raises surprise, while observers attribute to their inability to nominate an Islamist or loyal figure who has a chance of winning, especially since the country’s system, according to the new constitution, is presidential.

They say that it is easy for Islamists to nominate pro-Islamic personalities in the legislative elections and present them to the voter as independent figures, which is almost the same plan that was adopted in the 2012 General National Congress elections.

And the head of the Libyan Elections Commission, Imad al-Sayeh, had previously accused the Al-Wefaq government, which is controlled by Islamists, of obstructing the conduct of the referendum on the constitution, which is supposed to be the basic step for holding the presidential elections, pointing out that the government refused to provide a budget for the referendum.

Since the signing of the Skhirat Agreement, which is seen as offering Libya nothing other than international recognition of the Islamists who were expelled by the ballot box, and the start of the reconciliation government in Tripoli that emerged from it, the proposal for elections has been repeated more than once, and this is a proposal the Islamists will not openly reject, but rather by creating obstacles that prevent elections from taking place, especially obstructing the referendum on the constitution.

The Paris Conference, held in May 2018, was the first to stipulate the necessity of holding legislative and presidential elections before the end of the year, the same thing that was stipulated by the Rome Conference, but remained a dead letter.

Fayez Al-Sarraj launched two initiatives, the first in 2018 and the second in 2019, both of which provide for presidential and legislative elections, but Al-Sayeh’s statements confirm that the two initiatives were not serious.

Reports are circulating that one of the most important reasons that prompted the Commander-in-Chief of the Army, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, to carry out the attack on Tripoli was the existence of a plot that the Islamists sought to pass in the Ghadames conference, which was cancelled due to the attack, which involved holding legislative elections and postponing the presidency under the pretext that a constitution was not promulgated. Meanwhile, many politicians believe it is possible to revise the constitutional declaration to hold the presidential elections.

Al Arab