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Africa

Libyan parliament sessions shelved

The decision to suspend parliament's main activities comes due to lack of security, according to GNC leader al-Magariaf.
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2013 14:58
Libyan National Congress President Mohammed al-Magariaf's car came under fire last week, he was unhurt [Reuters]

Libya's parliament has said it will temporarily suspend its main activities due to security concerns, following an incident in which armed protesters stormed the assembly.

The Libyan News Agency quoted General National Congress (GNC) President Mohammed al-Magariaf on Sunday as saying the decision was prompted by the lack of security and meetings would resume when a safe venue was found.

Legislators were forced to move from the main parliament complex in Tripoli in early February when it was occupied by wounded veterans of the 2011 uprising demanding medical treatment abroad.

On Tuesday, armed protesters stormed a meeting of the Congress at the alternative venue legislators have been using. The protesters demanded that officials linked to the ousted regime of Muammar Gaddafi be banned from public life.

Al-Magariaf's car came under fire as he escaped the meeting.

The interior minister at the time said that gunmen in a crowd of Libyans demanding that legislators pass a bill barring former associates of Gaddafi from power, shot at the car of the GNC speaker.

Al-Magariaf, a former ambassador to India who had survived a gun attack at his home in January, was unharmed and no one else was hurt in the shooting.

Sixteen months since Gaddafi met his end, Libyan authorities are still struggling to organise effective security forces and assert their control over rebels.

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