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Libyans vote in 1st election after Gadhafi

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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-07-12 02:35 AM
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Libyans vote in 1st election after Gadhafi

Jul 7, 2:58 AM EDT

Libyans vote in 1st election after Gadhafi

Associated Press

TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) -- Libyans started voting on Saturday in the first parliamentary election since the ouster and slaying last year of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi, a major step forward on the tumultuous transition to democratic government after more than four decades of authoritarian rule.

The election for a 200-seat legislature was being held amid intense regional rivalries, fears of violence and calls for a boycott. However, lines began to form outside polling centers more than an hour before they were scheduled to open in the capital Tripoli. Policemen and army soldiers were guarding the centers, searching voters as well as election workers.

Libya's election is the latest fruit of Arab Spring revolts against authoritarian leaders. It is likely to be dominated by Islamist parties of all shades, a similar outcome to elections held in the country's neighbors Egypt and Tunisia, which had had their own, though much less bloody, uprisings.

In the oil-rich east, where there is a thriving autonomy movement, calls for a boycott and pre-election violence have cast a shadow over the vote. But in Tripoli, voters were jubilant.


Prior to those four decades of rule by Gadafi, Libya had been a monarchy for 18 years and prior to that, it had been under colonial rule. So, that nation has never seen anything but authoritarian rule.

Yet, they were on line to vote all of one hour before polls opened?

I was so excited to vote for obama in 2008, I was on line more than an hour before polls opened and so were others (hence, a line). And that was not the first election in the U.S. or the first election in which I voted.

Why are Libyans less excited to vote for the first time ever in an allegedly honest election than my fellow Bostonians and I were to vote in 2008?

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