Libyan Olympic Committee Chief Released
The deputy chief of Libya’s Olympic Committee announced Sunday that Nabil Elalem, the committee’s president, is free and resting at home. Elalem had been kidnapped from his car last week by armed gunmen, and information surrounding his whereabouts or the motives for the abduction had been unknown. The short announcement by the deputy chief withheld any further information on the terms of his release or the identities of his captors, but did say that Elalem may still attend the London Olympics as scheduled.
Meanwhile, Libya’s political parties are already competing for allies among the 120 independents elected to the new national congress. Many of the independents have announced that they will declare with whom they will align when the new congress convenes, but others are likely to remain unaligned until critical votes come up. As one witness in Libya put it, “the political game is only just starting … No one quite knows who is who and what they are likely to support.”
Also, in light of Libya’s more moderate National Forces Alliance victory, The Atlantic writes on how growing dissatisfaction in incumbent Islamist governments may lead to a new wave of secular parties coming to power. With Morocco and Tunisia as primary examples, the article argues that the inability of ruling Islamist parties to tackle corruption and unemployment, combined with political miscalculations involving unpopular social restrictions, “emphasizes that prospects for sustained Islamist government in the Arab world were tenuous to begin with” and “make the road ahead even more difficult for these parties than it needed to be.”