While Libyan demonstrators advocate "civil disobedience", demanding the resignation of all political leaders, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi has offered two solutions to the crisis.
It's been a week since popular discontent continues to grow in Libya. Demonstrations erupted last Friday in Tobruk – where the seat of parliament was set on fire –, Sirte, Misrata and as far as Tripoli. An autonomous, massive movement that goes beyond the East-West divisions of the Libyan elites.
The demonstrators demanded the resignation of all political leaders, in particular the legislative leaders Aguila Salah and Khaled al-Mishri, as well as the two rival heads of government Abdel Hamid Dbeibah and Fathi Bachagha.
The four characters did not find support from Western chancelleries, or even from the United Nations (UN) – António Guterres and his envoy Stephanie Williams have described as “illegitimate” all the tenors of Libyan politics.
The head of the Presidential Council Mohammed el-Menfi proposed a roadmap. It will be “discussed during urgent consultations with political actors” in order to “put in place the end of the transition via the elections”. A proposal that is struggling to convince, while the Libyan presidential trio is absent subscribers.
On the other hand, the heir to the "Guide of the Revolution", Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, broke his silence for the first time since February. In a statement, Gaddafi offered two solutions to find a "peaceful way out of the dangerous crisis that Libya is experiencing today".
عاجل > النص الكامل لبيان مبادرة المترشح #سيف_الاسلام_القذافي بشأن تشكيل جهة محايدة تضع قانون انتخابي غير اقصائي او انسحاب كل المرشحين للرئاسة ممن يراد اقصائهم وبشكل جماعي بما فيهم هو ، وذلك كمحاولة أخيرة لحل سلمي ، وفقًا لنص البيان . # ليبيا #العنود pic.twitter.com/QrhtVUzPpo
— صحيفة العنود الليبية (@Anoud_Libyan) July 5th, 2022
For Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, it's all or nothing
In the preamble, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi notes that "the reality is that today, everyone clings to power for the material and moral gains they have obtained since their access to sovereign positions in the Libyan state". "This is clear to the Libyan people and to the international community," he continues.
He then recalls that, if "no one makes concessions", Libya will experience "disasters and serious events". Saif al-Islam Gaddafi then proposes two solutions to the crisis. The first is for a “neutral party” to put in place “legal and administrative rules”. The objective, according to Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, would be “urgent, non-exclusive presidential and legislative elections, where everyone participates regardless of considerations or factors”.
The second solution for Saif al-Islam Gaddafi would be " that all personalities withdraw from the electoral process collectively and without exception. And that a presidential election is held afterwards.
Saif al-Islam Gaddafi assures that "if this does not happen, the masquerade will continue" and Libya "will continue on the path of tears and blood". Statements that have had a lot of repercussions, not only on social networks, but also on the streets of Libya. Posters bearing photos of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, accompanied by the slogan "We will always be for Libya and its people", are sprouting in the thousands in the streets of Libya.
— وكـالـة وادي دينـــار الإخبـــارية (@wady_dynar) July 7th, 2022
Boot noises in Western embassies and at the UN
Libyan politicians do not take the "Gaddafi solution" seriously, and analysts consider it "unrealistic", without really giving reasons. But it is especially on the side of the Western embassies that the reactions vary, from mockery to disdain.
But precisely, if the "non-elected" Libyans also realize that they are in the hot seat, they are not the only ones. A big Western diplomatic reshuffle is currently being played out in Libya. The French Embassy, which is planning its reopening, will appoint a new representative in place of Ambassador Béatrice Le Fraper du Hellen. According to Africa Intelligence, its number 2, Bruno Pereira da Silva, is also excluded because of his recent joining of the administration of Catherine Colonna at the Quai d'Orsay.
The investigative site also shed light on the involvement of the two French diplomats in the Aguila Salah-Fathi Bachagha-Admed Miitig alliance, which had been popular after Bachagha's appointment as prime minister but then crumbled due to of its failure to take Tripoli.
As for the United States, Ambassador Richard Norland will also leave his post. He will be replaced by his number 2 Leslie Ordeman, a veteran of NATO and the American mission to the United Nations.
On the UN side, precisely, the departure of the head of the Manul Stephanie Williams is imminent. The UN envoy had planned to leave on June 30. But it seems that UN Secretary-General António Guterres is having a hard time choosing his replacement.
A first proposal, last May, was that of the former head of Minusma Mongi Hamdi (Tunisia). However, the latter would have been refused by the French and British ambassadors. Then, the candidacy of former Algerian Foreign Minister Sabri Boukadoum was blocked by lobbying from the United Arab Emirates. To be continued.