Libya: Amazigh minority won't recognize new constitution

Constituent assembly to be elected tomorrow

19 February, 18:03

    Libyan Amazigh people protest (Archive) Libyan Amazigh people protest (Archive)

    (ANSAmed) - TRIPOLI - As Libya prepares to elect its constituent assembly on Thursday, the Amazigh Berber minority on Wednesday said it will not recognize the country's future constitution.
    ''We will not recognize those who do not recognize us'', the Amazigh Supreme Council said.
    Tomorrow's vote, to be held on a national holiday, will elect a 60-seat assembly, its members equally divided between the country's three regions: Cyrenaica (east), Fezzan (south) and Tripolitania (west).
    Six seats are reserved for women, and six more are to be divided up among Libya's three minorities: the Tebu, the Tuareg and the Amazigh people.
    There are 692 candidates, including 73 women, with the Tebu fielding 14 and the Tuareg 6.
    The Amazigh are boycotting, saying they are just as marginalized as under the former regime of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. They want more representation on the assembly, and constitutional recognition of their culture and their Tamazight language.
    The new constitution will be key in rebuilding the Libyan State and its institutions. If women and minorities are left out, it won't be able to uphold their rights, according to Human Rights Watch. (ANSAmed).

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