Libya’s electoral body says it is ready to hold a vote

Libya’s electoral body said on Saturday that it was ready to hold elections once a political agreement had been reached.

US Ambassador Richard Norland met with Imad al-Sayeh, head of Libya’s High National Electoral Commission (HNEC), to discuss developments in the crisis-stricken country.

“It was encouraging to hear Dr. al-Sayeh confirm the HNEC’s readiness to hold elections once a political agreement has been reached on the way forward,” Norland was quoted as saying in a statement from the embassy.

The US diplomat said that the Joint Committee of the House of Representatives (Parliament) and the Supreme Council of Ministers proposed by US Adviser Stephanie Williams “represent the next practical step towards this goal, and we urge all parties to support this process.”

As a result of differences in electoral law and the role of the judiciary in the electoral process, Libya was unable to hold presidential and parliamentary elections scheduled for December 24, 2021.

On March 4, Williams called on the House of Representatives and the Senate High Council of State to nominate delegates to “a joint committee dedicated to developing a consensus base.”

However, several Libyan deputies went out of their way to criticize the proposal and accused the UN adviser of trying to divide the country.

Opponents claim that Williams’ proposal circumvented a constitutional amendment recently approved by the Libyan parliament to form a panel to make constitutional changes.

The situation escalated in Libya earlier this month after parliament gave confidence in a new government led by former Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha while Abdul Hamid Dbeibah insisted on continuing his post and duties as prime minister.

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