Two years after the death of Muammar Qaddafi, Libya did little to mark the anniversary of its “liberation” from the veteran dictator’s regime as it struggles to move on from the violent revolt that shook the country.
Post-Qaddafi authorities are still straining to assert power over large areas of the country.
Adding to the issue, many rebel units which fought in the NATO-backed uprising against Qaddafi’s forces operate as militias, at times in outright defiance of the government.
No sign of any celebrations in Tripoli or Benghazi was seen, but the government did issue a brief statement on Tuesday congratulating the Libyan people on “the decisive day that ended tyranny and despotism.”
The second anniversary comes less than two weeks after a former rebel kidnapped Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan, highlighting the persistent weakness of the central government.
Tripoli resident Abdelhadi al-Sultan, told Agence France-Presse how pessimistic he felt about the anniversary.
“Nothing has changed in Libya,” he said. “Libya is not getting better, it is heading towards worse things because of the militias that really govern the country.”
On the other hand, Fethi Terbel, the lawyer and human rights activist whose arrest sparked Libya’s uprising, was relatively optimistic.
“I have a positive outlook two years after the liberation, despite the bitterness that dominates most peoples’ feelings and which seems to me to be the natural result of a revolution still in its infancy,” he told AFP.
Amnesty International on Wednesday commented on the ongoing struggle in Libya.
“The Libyan authorities must urgently find a durable solution to end the continued forcible displacement of tens of thousands of Tawarghas,” the watchdog said.