Soldiers from the National Army of Cyrenaica. (Reuters / Esam Al-Fetori)
Source: Russia Today
Libya’s integrity will be defended by any means - even “with force” if needed - says Libyan “transitional” leader, Mustafa Abdel Jalil. His statement comes a day after the eastern tribal leaders declared autonomy for the region.
Mustafa Abdel Jalil warned people of the East that the “remnants of Gaddafi regime” have infiltrated the Cyrenaica region in order to exploit its people and resources.
“We are ready to deter them, even with force,” AFP cited Jalil as saying at a conference in Misrata broadcast by local television. “We are not prepared to divide Libya.”
Earlier Jalil stressed that “some Arab countries” are involved in this “conspiracy against Libya and Libyans,” by supporting and encouraging such a division between the East and the West to happen.
On Tuesday, the cradle of the last year’s uprising against Gaddafi, Libya’s eastern Cyrenaica region with its center in Benghazi, declared semi-autonomy from the central government in the capital Tripoli. The gathering of the major tribal leaders and militia commanders decided that the new state, also known as Barqa, with its own parliament and police force, would run its affairs independently.
While the East is seeking administrative independence, basically pushing forward the idea of federalism, the West is promoting “decentralization,” though centered in Tripoli.
According to the national charter, which was presented on Wednesday, Libya is a parliamentary democracy with a decentralized system of administration. And Mustafa Abdel Jalil is eager to defend the principles of what he calls a “constitution for Libya's future.”