At a time when the Libyan 6+6 Committee finished its work regarding what it called fulfilling the legal framework necessary for conducting internal elections, it was also shrouded in ambiguity about the conditions for running for the presidential elections for fear of hindering them again after the approval of the 6+6 Committee and their agreement that the legislative and presidential elections be organized according to simultaneous procedures. They also agreed on how to involve political parties in the elections for the House of Representatives through party lists or individual candidacies. This came amid the presence of supporters and opponents, which was confirmed by observers of the Libyan issue that there is great ambiguity and obstacles that may appear in the coming days amid great challenges facing Libya’s march towards elections.
From the Moroccan coast of Bouznika, Omar Abulifa, head of the joint committee between the House of Representatives and the state to prepare the electoral laws, known as the 6+6 Committee, came out to the Libyans optimistic and promising that its members had achieved consensus on points related to the election of the president of the state and the National Assembly with its two chambers, the House of Representatives and the Senate, and they agreed that the legislative and presidential elections be organized according to simultaneous procedures. They also agreed on how to involve political parties in the House of Representatives elections through party lists or individual candidacies.
As for the positive point in the electoral commission’s statement, it is the involvement of political parties in the upcoming House of Representatives elections through party lists, and calling for “working in two parallel lines,” the first of which is pushing towards consensus between the House of Representatives and the state to produce a constitutional basis upon which the country’s presidential and legislative elections will be held. The second is the establishment of a new executive authority for a specific period and clear tasks, on top of which is the implementation of the electoral process.
However, the smell of other negotiations on a new deal either to form a new government inside Libya or to merge the two current governments under the umbrella of one government, as Libyan House Speaker Aquila Saleh revealed that they are seeking to agree on a new mini-government that includes national figures who work for about six or eight months until the elections, stressing his keenness to complete the elections under the supervision of a neutral party, or as he put it, “neither the government of the East nor the government of the West.”
On the other hand, Cairo welcomed the efforts of the 6+6 Joint Committee formed by the Libyan House of Representatives and the High Council of State to prepare electoral laws, as Egypt looks forward to the House of Representatives, the High Council of State, and the 6+6 Committee continuing their tasks in order to fulfill the necessary legal framework for holding presidential and parliamentary elections simultaneously as soon as possible, and in commitment to the Libyan ownership of the solution, which would allow the Libyan people to achieve their aspirations and build their future.
Ambiguity in Libya
UN Envoy to Libya Abdoulaye Bathily said that serious challenges remain ahead of Libya’s march towards elections, including ensuring a safe environment, addressing the dilemma of armed formations, advancing national reconciliation and transitional justice, and protecting human rights and international humanitarian law.
During his presidency of the first plenary session of the Security Working Group emanating from the International Follow-up Committee of the Berlin Conference to be held on Libyan soil, in conjunction with Turkey, Bathily said, “I count on your cooperation in creating the conditions for achieving peace and stability in Libya, and I urge you to seize this opportunity to strengthen what achievements you have made and overcome your differences.”
On the other hand, Mohamed Qashout, a researcher of Libyan affairs, confirmed that the controversial points regarding the presidential elections, which mean the candidacy of dual nationals and the military, were not addressed by the members of the 6+6 Committee, and all that took place in the Bouznika discussions was about the parliamentary elections.
Qashout added in statements to the Reference that the Libyan House of Representatives and the High Council of State do not have the power to impose what they agreed upon to hold the presidential elections because there are political deals that must take place, especially with regard to the candidacy of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, as there is a local political battle between the supporters of Saif al-Islam and the supporters of the so-called February 17th Revolution, as it is assumed that the committee is working to come up with a quick solution, because the two state bodies have reached the end point, with neither the Libyan people nor the international community accepting their existence.