NCHRL Criticizes Exclusion of Civil Society from Libya’s Reconciliation Project


On Monday, the National Commission for Human Rights in Libya (NCHRL) strongly criticized the Presidential Council for “unilaterally launching a national reconciliation project, without the engagement of human rights and legal institutions specialized in human rights, international humanitarian law, and transitional justice.”

The Commission said that the reconciliation conference “failed to represent the active components of Libyan society.” It “regretted the deliberate marginalization, and exclusion of civil society institutions working in the field of human rights and the rule of law, by the Deputy Head of the Presidential Council, Abdullah Al-Lafi.”

The NCHRL also denounced the Presidential Council’s failure to “represent the families of victims, and those affected by wars in the path of national reconciliation and transitional justice.”

The Commission added that the “continued exclusion of these active institutions from participating in the work of the preparatory meetings, to review the legal frameworks for the draft national reconciliation law, represents a failure to establish firm foundations, rules, and pillars for national reconciliation.”

It added that the failure to involve as many active parties and entities as possible will “threaten all national and societal efforts achieved in this regard.”

The NCHRL emphasized that “comprehensive national and social reconciliation and peace in Libya can only be achieved through the active participation of all social and political components, political and societal forces, representatives of victims and affected people, civil society organizations and institutions, and all political parties and movements.”

It affirmed that “national reconciliation must be based on solid and fair foundations and rules, so that it can achieve its desired goals, and not become a point of contention, instead of a point of agreement and convergence.”

On Sunday, the Head of Libya’s Presidential Council, Mohamed Al-Mnifi kicked off the preparatory meeting for the National Reconciliation Conference in Libya.

The event was attended by Representatives of the African Union, a number of foreign ambassadors, members of the Libyan Parliament, the High Council of State (HCS), tribal Sheikhs, and notables from various regions of Libya.

The opening ceremony witnessed speeches by the Chairman of the African Union, Senegalese President Macky Sall, the Head of the African Union (AU) High-Level Committee on Libya, Denis Sassou N’Guesso, the Chairman of the AU Commission, Moussa Faki, and the Secretary-General of the Arab League, Ahmed Aboul-Gheit.

President Sall affirmed the African Union’s “support for the Presidential Council’s initiative to achieve reconciliation in Libya, and support for any comprehensive solution to the prolonged crisis.”

In turn, Al-Mnifi called for pressure to be placed “on all political bodies in Libya in order to achieve comprehensive national reconciliation between all parties.”

He also stressed the need to “approve the constitutional basis, in order to achieve the aspirations of the Libyan people in holding elections. Ignoring reconciliation and power-sharing has further complicated the Libyan scene.

The solution to the Libyan crisis lies in restoring the spirit of the homeland, and the principle of reparation.”

Al-Mnifi also reaffirmed that the PC “is still equidistant from all parties, and was never a party to the struggle for power in Libya.”