Blog Post

The Key Challenge Facing Libya in 2012

January 6, 2012

One of the stories we have been working in Libya, about the key challenge facing the country in the post Gaddafi era, went out on the BBC today. It focuses on the need to disarm the various militia that toppled the old regime and persuade them to integrate into a new national security force.
If the interim government is unable to get to grips with this problem, the country runs the risk of falling into civil war. It will also battle to hold free and fair elections later this year to choose the representatives that will write Libya’s new constitution. In recent weeks there have been a series of violent clashes between various militia groups. The latest confrontation occurred earlier this week between two rival brigades in the centre of the capital, in which 4 people died.
We filmed with the Zintan Brigade, who captured Tripoli’s International airport when the capital fell to the rebels in August. So far they have refused to hand over control to the interim government and join a national army. In another part of the country, Zawiyah is leading the way in changing the status quo. A group of ex-rebels have formed themselves into a new local unit, ready to join a national army when it is established. We went along to see them train at an old army base and were impressed with what they had managed to achieve with very limited resources. Here are some photos that I took of the various rebel groups while working on the story.

My colleague Mark Lowen has more analysis on this story on the BBC website. You can read it here.

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