International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

Zeidan and the future of Libya

In light of the recent election of the new Libyan Prime Minister, Ali Zeidan, a long time opponent of Gaddafi, I want to discuss an article from the UN News Centre that I read a month ago, and have been thinking about. Citing “transitional justice and national reconciliation” as one of his two priorities, Zeidan, who has played a key role in support of the political leadership of the ‘rebels’ against the forces of Gaddafi, will hopefully facilitate change in working towards a well-rounded process of achieving transitional justice. The article from Mid-September precisely addressed the need for such a process to manage reconciliation and referred to the then-released UN report by the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL). In order to set the foundation for a new democratic state, the aftermath of 41 years of autocratic rule followed by civil war and the overthrow of the infamous ruler must be properly dealt with. As the report recommends, the transitional justice strategy must include a “truth-seeking approach,” the provision of a fair legal process and prosecution to those in continued detention, and the consequent reconciliation of victims. Public dialogue on the matter must be established, as well as an entity of official public consultation, and conflicts among specific communities must be addressed. Furthermore, precautions against further human rights violations must be taken, to further restore trust in the minds of the people regarding the progress being made. Only through such a comprehensive and fair approach can the overall causes of the Libyan conflict be repaired, as well as its consequences, in setting up the basis of a healthy and enduring democratic Libya.

(Three links within the text)

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