News / Africa

Libya's NTC Elects New Interim PM

Libyan interim Defence Minister Mohammed Dfeynas (R) welcomes NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen upon arrival at Tripoli airport on a surprise visit hours before NATO's air mission was due to end officially, October 31, 2011.
Libyan interim Defence Minister Mohammed Dfeynas (R) welcomes NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen upon arrival at Tripoli airport on a surprise visit hours before NATO's air mission was due to end officially, October 31, 2011.

Libya's National Transitional Council has elected Abdel-Rahim el-Keeb as the country's new interim prime minister, hours before NATO ended its Libya mission.

The Tripoli native won with a slim majority Monday, gaining 26 of the 51 National Transitional Council members' votes.  El-Keeb is a U.S.-educated electrical engineer who earned his doctorate at North Carolina State University.

He is tasked with forming a new government that will pave the way for national elections.

The vote came shortly before NATO ended its Libya mission at midnight Libyan time, concluding its air campaign to protect civilians under a U.N. Security Council resolution.

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen hailed the seven-month bombing campaign during a visit to Tripoli Monday. He said he is "proud of the part NATO played" in helping Libyan transitional forces drive Moammar Gadhafi from power.

Rasmussen said the alliance acted to protect the Libyan people and "together we succeeded." He called Libya "finally free," praising its people for having transformed the country and helping to change the region.

The NATO chief was in the Libyan capital for talks with the National Transitional Council, including chairman Mustafa Abdel Jalil. Rasmussen said discussions will focus on Libya's expectations regarding possible future NATO assistance and the country's roadmap for a transition to democratic rule.

NATO formally decided to halt the mission after the U.N. canceled the mandate last week, though Libya's transitional leaders had urged NATO to continue because of security concerns.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says Libya faces a "huge challenge" to unify the country, and that leaders have a complicated political task ahead of them. But she told The Washington Post the United States and other countries have offered assistance, and will help Libya in any way they can.

VOA's Susan Yackee discusses the development with correspondent Margaret Besheer at UN headquarters in New York:

Meanwhile, Libya's outgoing provisional prime minister, Mahmoud Jibril, Sunday said he could confirm the presence of chemical weapons in the country.  He did not provide details on weapons sites, but said representatives from international organizations are set to arrive later this week to deal with the issue.

Last week, the top U.N. envoy to Libya, Ian Martin, told the Security Council that previously undeclared chemical weapons sites had been found in Libya.

Provisional leaders declared the country liberated from the 42-year rule of Moammar Gadhafi during a ceremony on October 23.  Officials have said they plan to form a new interim government within a month, followed by elections for a constitutional assembly within eight months.  Parliamentary and presidential elections would be held within a year after that.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

You May Like

HRW: Egypt's Trial of Morsi ‘Badly Flawed’

Human Rights Watch says former Egypt leader's detention without charge for more than three weeks after his removal from office violated Egyptian law; government rejects criticism More

Photogallery Lancet Report Calls for Major Investment in Surgery

In its report published by The Lancet, panel of experts says people are dying from conditions easily treated in the operating room such as hernia, appendicitis, obstructed labor, and serious fractures More

Music Industry Under Sway of Digital Revolution

Millions of people in every corner of the Earth now can enjoy a vast variety and quantity of music in a way that has never before been possible More

This forum has been closed.
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.
Study: Insecticide Damaging Wild Bee Populationsi
April 24, 2015 10:13 PM
A popular but controversial type of insecticide is damaging important wild bee populations, according to a new study. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.

Video Study: Insecticide Damaging Wild Bee Populations

A popular but controversial type of insecticide is damaging important wild bee populations, according to a new study. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.

Video Data Servers Could Heat Private Homes

As every computer owner knows, when their machines run a complex program they get pretty hot. In fact, cooling the processors can be expensive, especially when you're dealing with huge banks of computer servers. But what if that energy could heat private homes? VOA’s George Putic reports that a Dutch energy firm aims to do just that.

Video Cinema That Crosses Borders Showcased at Tribeca Film Festival

Among the nearly 100 feature length films being shown at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival in New York City are more than 20 documentaries and features with international appeal, from a film about a Congolese businessman in China, to documentaries shot in Pakistan and diaspora communities in the U.S., to a poetic look at disaffected South African youth. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.

Video UN Confronts Threat of Young Radicals

The radicalization and recruitment of young people into Islamist extremist groups has become a growing challenge for governments worldwide. On Thursday, the U.N. Security Council heard from experts on the issue, which has become a potent threat to international peace and security. VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports.

Video Growing Numbers of Turks Discover Armenian Ancestry

In a climate of improved tolerance, growing numbers of people in Turkey are discovering their grandmothers were Armenian. Hundreds of thousands of Armenians escaped the mass deportations and slaughter of the early 1900's by forced conversion to Islam. Or, Armenian children were taken in by Turkish families and assimilated. Now their stories are increasingly being heard. Dorian Jones reports from Istanbul that the revelations are viewed as an important step.

Video Migrants Trek Through Western Balkans to Reach EU

Migrants from Africa and other places are finding different routes into the European Union in search of a better life. The Associated Press followed one clandestine group to document their trek through the western Balkans to Hungary. Zlatica Hoke reports that the migrants started using that route about four years ago. Since then, it has become the second-most popular path into Western Europe, after the option of sailing from North Africa to Italy.

Video TIME Magazine Honors Activists, Pioneers Seen as Influential

TIME Magazine has released its list of celebrities, leaders and activists, whom it deems the world’s “most influential” in 2015. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports from New York.

Video US Businesses See Cuba as New Frontier

The Obama administration's opening toward Cuba is giving U.S. companies hope they'll be able to do business in Cuba despite the continuation of the U.S. economic embargo against the communist nation. Some American companies have been able to export some products to Cuba, but the recent lifting of Cuba's terrorism designation could relax other restrictions. As VOA's Daniela Schrier reports, corporate heavy hitters are lining up to head across the Florida Straits - though experts urge caution.

Video Kenya Launches Police Recruitment Drive After Terror Attacks

Kenya launched a major police recruitment drive this week as part of a large-scale effort to boost security following a recent spate of terror attacks. VOA’s Gabe Joselow reports that allegations of corruption in the process are raising old concerns about the integrity of Kenya’s security forces.

Video Japan, China in Race for Asia High-Speed Rail Projects

A lucrative competition is underway in Asia for billions of dollars in high-speed rail projects. Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia Thailand and Vietnam are among the countries planning to move onto the fast track. They are negotiating with Japan and the upstart Chinese who are locked in a duel to revolutionize transportation across Asia. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok has details.

Video Scientists: Mosquitoes Attracted By Our Genes

Some people always seem to get bitten by mosquitoes more than others. Now, scientists have proved that is really the case - and they say it’s all because of genes. It’s hoped the research might lead to new preventative treatments for diseases like malaria, as Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

Video Bible Museum Coming to Washington DC

Washington is the center of American political power and also home to some of the nation’s most visited museums. A new one that will showcase the Bible has skeptics questioning the motives of its conservative Christian funders. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky reports.

Video Armenia and Politics of Word 'Genocide'

A century ago this April, hundreds of thousands of Armenians of the Turkish Ottoman empire were deported and massacred, and their culture erased from their traditional lands. While broadly accepted by the U.N. and at least 20 countries as “genocide”, the United States and Turkey have resisted using that word to describe the atrocities that stretched from 1915 to 1923. But Armenians have never forgotten.

Video Afghan First Lady Pledges No Roll Back on Women's Rights

Afghan First Lady Rula Ghani, named one of Time's 100 Most Influential, says women should take part in talks with Taliban. VOA's Rokhsar Azamee has more from Kabul.

Video New Brain Mapping Techniques Could Ease Chronic Pain

From Boulder, Colorado, Shelley Schlender reports that new methods for mapping pain in the brain are providing validation for chronic pain and might someday guide better treatment.

VOA Blogs