Libyan PM to Come from Outside Congress
Libya’s National Congress voted to bar any current members from serving as prime minister in the next government. The vote passed overwhelmingly in favor of the motion, in what is a major step in defining the separation of powers in the future Libyan government, but a decision that does not alter domestic politics greatly, given that the front runners for the prime minister position are all outside of the congress. The new prime minister is expected to be announced on September 8. The congress will decide at a later date if this exclusion will be applied to other ministries as well.
In addition, Libya’s interior minister who had resigned last week after a series of attacks by hardline groups on Sufi shrines subsequently withdrew his resignation and has resumed work. Fawzi Abdel-Al told reporters that “I thought submitting my resignation would relieve me and many others. But regrettably, it further complicated matters,” but failed to elaborate further. Abdel-Al, who had been the focal point of lawmakers anger over the incidents, will likely be replaced in the coming weeks once the congress names a new government
Also, the seven Iranian Red Crescent volunteers kidnapped by a militia in Benghanzi have been able to contact their families for the first time since their abduction on July 31. Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi announced that the seven had been granted a phone call home, but had no statement on their condition or potential release.