News / Middle East

Against Odds, Libyans to Elect New Parliament

Against the Odds, Libyans to Elect New Parliamenti
X
Elizabeth Arrott
June 24, 2014 1:39 PM
Libyans head to the polls Wednesday for their second parliamentary elections since the 2011 toppling of leader Moammar Gadhafi. VOA’s Elizabeth Arrott has more from our Middle East bureau in Cairo.
Against the Odds, Libyans to Elect New Parliament
Elizabeth Arrott
Libyans head to the polls Wednesday for their second parliamentary elections since the 2011 toppling of leader Moammar Gadhafi.
 
Few Libyans are expected to participate in Wednesday’s vote for a new parliament. Only a quarter of the population is registered to take part, and the fear of violence may keep many of those away from the polls.
 
The central government holds little influence beyond the capital Tripoli, making security precautions tenuous.
 
 U.N. official Ismail Ould Cheikh said the United Nations is trying to help with the vote.

"There are still political and security obstacles, and our operation may face these obstacles. The road forward is not going to be easy and for that reason the United Nations continues to provide support under a mandate from the Security Council," he said.

Ongoing battles

Forces loyal to renegade general Khalifa Haftar engaged in near daily combat with Islamist militants in Libya’s east.   
 
Haftar, who for years enjoyed U.S. protection, has promised a ceasefire during the vote.
 
But rival militias, many armed by NATO forces during the 2011 uprising, continue to cause unrest across the nation.
 
Still, the head of Libya’s election commission remained hopeful the vote would proceed smoothly.
 
"Regarding our arrangements in Benghazi, they are going to plan," said Emad al-Sayeh, a high national elections commission chief. In the South we have no problems regarding the electoral process. Any security problems have no direct link to the electoral process."

High hopes

And some voters hold out hope the election will help shore up the power of the central government.
 
"God willing, this election will go according to plan and we expect that after everything that has happened recently, we will reach the foundation stage and people will start to move forward and the country will calm down, because the people are really tired of what's going on," said Mohammed al-Guarshaa, a Benghazi resident.

Observers caution counting ballots and forming a government after this party-list free election may take some time. More worrisome, they added, is which, if any, of the warring parties will recognize the outcome.
 
  • People help a voter place his ballot paper into the box at a polling station inside a school in Tripoli, June 25, 2014.
  • An official helps a voter find his name before voting inside a school in Tripoli, June 25, 2014.
  • A man dips his finger in ink before casting his vote during a parliamentary election, in Al Bayda, Libya, June 25, 2014.
  • Election officials prepare for the vote in Tripoli June 24, 2014.
  • Election officials carry ballot boxes in a school ahead of elections in Tripoli, June 24, 2014.
  • An election official passes a voter registration board inside a school in Tripoli, June 24, 2014.
  • Election officials work inside a school ahead of elections in Tripoli, June 24, 2014.

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid