BRASILIA – The deputy prime minister of Libya, Omar Abdelkarim, spoke on Tuesday with President Rousseff and American Secretary of State Hilary Clinton. Abdelkarim told them that the goal of the provisional government of Libya is to reconnect with the West, through political, economic and commercial partnerships. He said that Libyan authorities’ efforts are directed at “rebuilding the country.”
According to diplomats who attended the meetings, in conversations with Dilma and Hillary, the Deputy Prime Minister said the Libyan government’s objective is to relate to all countries without exception. Abdelkarim attended the first Annual Conference on Open Government Partnership.
In Brasília, Abdelkarim also met with the Foreign Minister, Antonio Patriota, Brazilian parliamentarians and Brazilian ambassadors responsible for North Africa and the Middle East. In the meeting, the Deputy Prime Minister stressed that the desire to restructure the country is not only that of the government but also the desire of Libyan society.
Six months after the death of the former dictator Muammar Gaddafi, who led Libya for 42 years, the county still lives a tense atmosphere. Under the leadership of the Provisional Government, coördinated by the National Transitional Council (NTC), Libya often has protests and demonstrations demanding elections for choosing the future president and Congress.
Elections are scheduled for June 23 for the Constituent Assembly which will consist of 200 parliamentarians. Moreover, the Libyan authorities intensified their links with the international community for support to reorganize public institutions, overcoming difficulties posed by seven months of fighting between the first outbreak of rebellion until the capture and death of Gaddafi, in October 2011.
The Brazilian Embassy in Tripoli has been closed for thirteen months but is expected to reopen soon. Hearings are under way in Brasilia to select a new ambassador to Libya. Brazil did not support the Libyan revolution, and never explicitly recognized the legitimacy of the NTC, putting the two countries at odds.
There was some talk in Benghazi of punishing countries that offered no support or actively obstructed the revolution, but calmer heads have prevailed and the Libyans and Brazilians are looking forward to a renewed relationship.