Libyans Storm Transitional Govt. HQ in Benghazi

Posted January 21st, 2012 at 2:50 pm (UTC-5)
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A crowd of Libyan demonstrators used hand grenades to force their way inside the local headquarters of Libya's ruling National Transitional Council in the eastern city of Benghazi Saturday, to protest the pace of reforms.

Witnesses said the people of Benghazi, the birthplace of the uprising against longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi, were demanding greater transparency from the new leaders. Among the protesters were former rebels who were wounded in the fighting with pro-Gadhafi forces.

The incident took place a day before a new draft electoral law is to be announced.

Earlier this month, Libya published the draft that bans candidates for office who held positions of responsibility under Gadhafi or benefited financially from his rule.

The bill bans former officials from running for office who are accused of torturing Libyans or embezzling public funds, active members of the Revolutionary Guard and opposition fighters who made peace with Gadhafi.

It also gives women 20 seats in the 200-member national assembly. The election is scheduled for June.

NTC chief Mustafa Abdel Jalil stressed that the proposed legislation is merely a draft and still could undergo changes.