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One week before the presidential election, Libya is again under pressure from military factions that share control of the country. Some courts have already suspended the electoral procedure for the vote that was scheduled for December 24.
Tripoli has been patrolled for two days by the Al Samoud Brigade, commanded by Colonel Salah Badi. Since Wesneday night, the streets of Tripoli have been patrolled by armed vehicles. The troops preside over the area around the building of the Government of National Unity, those of the Presidential Council have also been surrounded by the Ministry of Defense. Military vehicles also keep the southern area of the city under control. The rebellion broke out after the Presidential Council replaced Abdel Basset Marwan, the commander of the Tripoli Military District. The decision was taken directly by President Menfi who appointed Abdel Qader Mansour as head of the Tripoli district, a former member of the military operations Fajr Libya, Al Bunyan Al Marsous and of Operation Vulcano Anger.
Even in Fezzan, the region richest in oil, the new clashes errupted. Forces linked to General Khalifa Haftar’s self-proclaimed Libyan National Army (LNA) have entered the southern Libyan city of Sebha after an agreement with the city’s sheikhs and notables. The agreement reached provides for the passage of the 116th Brigade – previously framed in the Ministry of Defense of the Government of National Unity of Tripoli – under the control of the forces of Cyrenaica. Command of the 118 Brigade passes from Commander Masoud al Jeddi to Ali al Deeb al Sulaimani. Sebha was surrounded by long military columns of armored vehicles and LNA tanks.
In Misrata, the mission of the United Nations envoy Stephanie Williams, ended with a stalemate. Williams had hoped until the end to persuade the military and tribal leaders in the area to follow the electoral path. She was heavily rebuffed. Finally, an official statement from the Misrata Court arrived. Supreme Court lawyer Abdel Basset al Haddad proclaimed that all electoral procedures in the Misrata area were to be suspended.
To conclude, one week before the vote, the National High Electoral Commission has not yet published the final list of candidates needed to launch the election campaign.