Security tight in Libya

2013-02-17 12:13
<a href=\\http://www.shutterstock.com\\>Shutterstock</a>

Shutterstock

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Benghazi - Security forces were on high alert across Libya on Sunday as the North African nation marks two years since the start of the revolt that toppled Muammar Gaddafi after four decades of iron-fisted rule.

Borders have been closed and some international flights suspended amid fears of a new outbreak of violence.

The anniversary of the uprising that ended with Gaddafi's killing in October 2011 comes as Libya's new rulers battle critics calling for a "new revolution" and accusing them of failing to usher in much-needed reforms.

On Friday, thousands of people gathered in the main cities of Tripoli and Benghazi to celebrate the initial 15 February 2011 protest that ignited the revolt two days later.

There is no official programme for Sunday's anniversary, but the authorities have taken steps aimed at preventing any violence on a day when spontaneous celebrations are expected.

Libya's borders with Egypt and Tunisia were closed from Thursday for four days, and all international flights have been suspended except at the airports of Tripoli and second city Benghazi - the cradle of the "February 17 revolution."

Undermine Libya's security

Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said the measures were taken to avoid "any bid to undermine Libya's security and disrupt celebrations marking the anniversary of the revolution."

Checkpoints have also been set up across the capital and in Benghazi.

Opposition groups are demanding that former Gaddafi regime officials be barred from holding public office, and a leaflet circulated in Tripoli calls for a "popular revolt" and civil disobedience to bring down the current regime.

It is unclear who is behind the leaflet and the calls for protests, but Libyan officials and several organisations, including Islamic groups, accuse remnants of the former regime of fomenting protests to "sow disorder and instability."

The authorities have said special permits will be needed for "peaceful protests," and have threatened force against anyone who tries to derail anniversary festivities.

Residents of Benghazi - which has been hit by Islamist-linked violence targeting international agencies and diplomatic missions - have set up neighbourhood watches.

Security challenge

The city was rocked last September 11 by an assault on the US consulate there that killed US ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

"Security is one of the challenges the country faces, especially the proliferation of weapons and the escape of thousands of prisoners" during the revolution, political analyst Suleyman Azqim told AFP.

"The new authorities are faced with immediate social demands that prevent them from implementing medium- or long-term economic or security strategies."

Despite Libya holding its first free elections in July last year, Azqim said the country is not yet politically mature after four decades of dictatorship under Gaddafi.

The fear of fresh violence is strong among both Libya's dwindling foreign community and Libyans who have rushed to stock up on food and domestic gas.

"We must be ready. One never knows what can happen, particularly since there is no stability in the country and the government is unable to impose its authority," said one, Murad Abuajila al-Majbri.

- SAPA

Read more on:    muammar gaddafi  |  libya  |  north africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Monday Kuils River - 17:34 PM
    Road name: Polkadraai Road Eastbound
    ROADWORKS between the R102 Van Riebeeck Road and the R310 Baden Powell Drive exit
  • Sunday Parow - 08:10 AM
    Road name: Mike Pienaar Boulevard
    WEEKENDS - ROAD CLOSED between Voortrekker Road and Tienie Meyer Drive due to roadworks (until end July)
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

SAICA Article Clerk

Cape Town Northern Suburbs
Hi-Tech Recruitment Cpt
R7 000 - R8 000 Per Month

Analyst Developer

Cape Town CBD
Mpumalanga Personnel & Training Consultants

Graphic / UI / UX Designer – R450k to R500k – Central Cape Town

Western Cape
E-Merge IT Recruitment
R450 000 - R500 000 Per Year

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

DStv Walka Handheld TV

The Walka Handheld TV is a slim, lightweight device with...

From R199.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something may come up to alert you of your security needs. It may be that you need to create a better structure for your finances...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.