The liberal National Forces Alliance had managed to have many candidates running for the General National Congress, as the alliance’s leader, Mahmoud Jibril, toured many Libyan towns and cities, stressing the importance of elections. He urged citizens to be actively involved in selecting their representatives in the congress, which would draft a new constitution for a new democratic Libya after nearly four decades of tyranny.
Thus, the alliance won the confidence of voters, while Islamists of National Front for the Salvation of Libya (NFSL) and the Justice and Development Party ran as independents, as soon as they realized they had little chance to win an overwhelming majority.
It should be noted that the Islamic-oriented NFSL was founded by Mohamed Yousef el-Magariaf and his companions in the 1980s, after they defected from Gadhafi’s rule, while Magariaf was an ambassador to India.
Magariaf and his companions continued their opposition against Gadhafi until the liberation of Libya. Following Gadhafi’s ouster, they returned to their homeland and secured three seats in the General National Congress in the July 2011 elections. Magariaf was elected president of the congress, while Ali Zeidan became interim prime minister.
Zeidan continued to fight armed groups, some of which joined the army and the police, which caused confusion in domestic security. This provided justification for foreign companies to postpone their return to Libya, which hampered reconstruction. Meanwhile, Magariaf preferred to return to his exile, in compliance with the controversial law of political isolation. The president of the Supreme Court, Kamal Dahan, told Al-Hayat that the court’s constitutional department will reconsider the appeal against the law after the judicial holiday at the end of August.