Libya: analyst says five true presidential candidates

Dbeibah, Gheddafi Jr, Haftar, Saleh and Bashagha

23 November, 15:17

    Libyan Prime Minister Abdel Hamid al Dbeibah (R) registers his candidacy at the electoral commission, for next month's presidential election in Tripoli, Libya Libyan Prime Minister Abdel Hamid al Dbeibah (R) registers his candidacy at the electoral commission, for next month's presidential election in Tripoli, Libya

    CAIRO - A political analyst cited by the website Al Arabiya said that although there are nearly one hundred candidates for the presidential elections in Libya, the real competition if the elections take place as planned on December 24 will only be between five main names: Dbeibah, Gaddafi Jr, Haftar, Saleh and Bashagha.

    The analyst, Mohamed al Raeish, first pointed out Prime Minister Abdel Hamid al Dbeibah, who since taking office in February has earned widespread popularity by managing to mobilise the population through programmes and projects that make him an exemplary candidate for the province of Tripoli as well as the cities of the south.

    The analyst said Seif al Islam Gaddafi, second son of late dictator Muammar, has "great electoral potential", in particular among the partisans of the old regime, and can exploit Libyans' disappointment over the lack of stability and the division of the country.

    Raeish said General Khalifa Haftar, head of the self-styled Libyan Army, will obtain the majority of the votes in the country's east for political reasons, as well as consensus in the south.

    The analyst said Aqila Saleh, head of the Libyan Parliament, can also count on the votes from the east (the Cyrenaica controlled militarily by Haftar), and has good relations with Egypt.

    Raeish said former interior minister Fathi Bashagha can count on votes from the western region, in particular Misurata, and has good relations with the West and Turkey.

    On the other hand, the analyst did not mention a well-known figure in Europe, former deputy prime minister Ahmeid Maitig, who distinguished himself for his ability to mediate even with the warlike Haftar.

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