The outgoing National Transitional Council (NTC) announced that it would formally hand over power to the new elected assembly on 8 August, amid apparently increasing violence in Libya. It appears highly likely that Mahmud Jibril’s National Forces Alliance (NFA) will be the dominant bloc, supported by a sizable majority of independents.
The last seven days has seen continued attacks in Tripoli and Benghazi. Most significantly, a car bomb detonated near a military police headquarters in downtown Tripoli on 4 August, the first reported car bomb in the capital since the fall of the previous regime. A military base in Mizdah, 150km south of the capital, came under attack on 3 August by unknown assailants and gunmen attacked an International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) compound in Misratah to the east of the capital on 5 August.
Benghazi still remains the focus for most of the urban violence in Libya. Gunmen kidnapped a seven-member Iranian delegation from the Iranian Red Crescent in Benghazi on 31 July. It was subsequently reported that the kidnapers were demanding that Iran pressure Iraq to release a number of Libyan prisoners held in Iraq jails. Libyan media also reported that military intelligence building in Benghazi was hit by an improvised explosive device on 1 August; the bombing was reported to have coincided with a jailbreak that freed an Islamist militant. Elsewhere, security forces were reported to have defused two bombs near to the Office of National Security in Benghazi on 3 August.