Libya NTC to meet in secret after office attacked

AFP , Sunday 22 Jan 2012

Libya's ruling National Transitional Council to adopt new election law, angry protesters attack its Benghazi offices

Libya's ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) was to meet Sunday at a secret location in Benghazi to adopt a new election law, hours after its offices came under attack in the eastern city.

"We didn't finish our work yesterday. A meeting is scheduled today to discuss and adopt the electoral law," said Salwa Al-Digheili who heads NTC's legal affairs.

"The meeting will take place at an undisclosed location for security reasons," she said, after protesters on Saturday lobbed grenades at and stormed the NTC offices in Benghazi, the cradle of last year's uprising against Moammar .

Up to 2,000 people, including wounded former rebels who helped topple Gaddafi, demonstrated in front of the NTC offices in Benghazi.

In what was the first such violence against the NTC, several home-made grenades were thrown at the offices and some protesters stormed the building and set its front ablaze, witnesses and NTC members told AFP.

Angry protesters threw plastic bottles at NTC head Mustafa Abdel Jalil.

The NTC had made public a draft election law in early January, with an article setting aside 10 per cent of the 200 seats in the proposed constituent assembly for women members.

The provision drew strong criticism from women's and rights groups.

The draft law also barred Libyans holding dual nationality and those who benefited under Gaddafi's regime from contesting elections. Candidates must be aged at least 25, under the draft, and the minimum age for voters is 18.

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