Libya’s Former Interior Minister Announces Run For President

FILE – Fathi Bashagha, then Libya’s UN-supported government’s interior minister is interviewed, Jan. 6, 2021 in Tripoli Libya. on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021. Bashagha announced his bid to run for president in the much-anticipated elections next month that face growing uncertainty. Bashagha, he fourth candidate to join the race, said his political platform envisages a new Libya based on justice, respect for human rights and a market-led economy. (AP Photo/Hazem Turkia, File)

Fathe Bashagha Libya’s former interior minister announced Thursday his bid to run for president. He is the latest of four candidate to join the race for the highest office in the oil-rich nation devastated by years of civil war.

The 59 year old Bashagha turned in his candidacy papers in the capital of Tripoli, and declared that his political platform envisages “a new Libya” based on justice, respect for human rights and a market-led economy.

“Libya will not go back to pre-2011. We will build a new Libya,” Bashagha told reporters in announcing his bid. “We will bring an end to suffering, tears and blood. Libya will turn from a rentier state into a free-market economy. We will be embracing reform, reconciliation and the reconstruction.”

The December elections face a number of obstacles, including occasional infighting among armed groups, the deep rift that remains between Libya’s east and west, and the presence of thousands of foreign fighters and troops.

– Ella Breedlove

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