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Monday, January 17, 2022

After Court Rule. Haftar to Run in Libya’s Presidential Elections

On Monday, the Tripoli Court of Appeals nullified the Al-Zawiya Court ruling disqualifying the Commander of the Libyan National Army (LNA), Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar’s presidential bid and reinstated him as a candidate.

Today’s ruling comes a week after Al-Zawiya Court of First Instance accepted an appeal lodged against Haftar’s candidacy. It had ruled to exclude him from the list of candidates for the 24 December elections.

In November, Libya’s Supreme Judicial Council ruled that appeals against candidates can only be filed in the area in which a candidate has applied.

In a related context, Sebha Court of Appeals has issued a final ruling in favour of Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi, regarding the appeal submitted against him by Libya’s High National Election Commission (HNEC).

The court ordered HNEC to restore him to the final list of candidates for the upcoming Presidential elections.

The first round of voting is planned to start on 24 December, though a number of divisive issues have yet to be resolved.

A final list of candidates for the elections has not yet been released. This comes amid a chaotic appeals process after HNEC initially disqualified 25 of the 98 candidates who registered.

The elections come after years of UN-led attempts to end the country’s civil war, and usher in a more democratic future.

The upcoming vote faces numerous challenges, including unresolved issues over laws governing the elections, and occasional infighting among armed groups. Other obstacles include the deep rift that remains between the country’s east and west, and the presence of thousands of foreign fighters and mercenaries.

The oil-rich North African county is currently governed by an interim government that was chosen after UN-led talks in Geneva in February.

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