Skip to main content

Amid tensions, polls open in key Libyan elections

By Jomana Karadsheh, CNN
updated 6:24 AM EDT, Wed June 25, 2014
A Libyan woman casts her vote at a polling station in the capital of Tripoli on June 25, 2014.
A Libyan woman casts her vote at a polling station in the capital of Tripoli on June 25, 2014.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The vote takes place against high tensions that have polarized Libya
  • It's the country's second parliamentary election since the fall of the Gadhafi regime
  • The vote is seen by the West as important for Libya's transition to democracy

Tripoli, Libya (CNN) -- Polls opened in Libya on Wednesday in the country's second parliamentary elections since the fall of the Gadhafi regime in 2011.

The vote was announced last month as Libya faced its worst political and security crisis since the revolution.

The voting is taking place at a time of high tensions that have polarized the country into two camps: Islamists and those who oppose them.

2013: Who's behind the Benghazi attack?

More than 1,500 candidates are competing in these elections, but they are running as individuals, not as political parties. In Libya's first vote in 2012, a more liberal political coalition won more seats than the Islamist parties.

The United Nations, the European Union and other Western countries have called for peaceful polling and stressed the importance of these elections for Libya's transition to democracy.

More than 1.5 million Libyans have registered to vote for a new 200 member parliament that will be called the Council of Representatives (COR) and will replace the General National Congress (GNC).

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 11:12 AM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson says he was just doing his "job right" when he shot and killed black teenager Michael Brown.
updated 8:18 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
Stunning stations where your first priority won't be finding the nearest exit.
updated 6:18 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says women's "nature is different," sparking fury.
updated 5:43 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
A 30-year-old woman has been charged with attempting to kill a baby police say spent five days down a drain before being discovered by cyclists.
updated 8:21 PM EST, Thu November 20, 2014
If it wasn't for a comic's skit, Bill Cosby would still be America's favorite father, says expert.
updated 7:51 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
Where do hip young things hang out in Taiwan?
updated 10:50 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
Obama orders the most sweeping overhaul of U.S. immigration in decades, prioritizing the deportation of "felons, not families."
updated 4:06 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Fighters loyal to ISIS are now in control of Derna, a city on Libya's Mediterranean coast.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and likely other countries have the capacity to shut down the U.S. power grid, says the NSA.
updated 2:45 PM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
The founder of a U.S. nonprofit that works with returning soldiers is named CNN's Hero of the Year.
updated 10:57 AM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT