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Libyan Islamists challenge ruling council's ban on religious, tribal and ethnic parties

Tripoli, Thu, 26 Apr 2012 ANI

Tripoli, Apr 26 (ANI): An Islamist party in Libya plans to challenge the country's ruling council's decision to ban political groups based on religion, tribe or ethnicity from taking part in upcoming elections.

Libya's ruling National Transitional Council spokesperson Mohammed al-Harizy said they have passed the law governing the formation of political parties on Tuesday.

"Parties are not allowed to be based on religion or ethnicity or tribe," he said.

He did not clarify how this would affect a political party formed in March by Libya's Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists.

According to News24, the head of the Brotherhood's Freedom and Development Party said the NTC needed to make it clearer what it meant by banning religious parties.

He pointed out that NTC's decision would cause controversy in Libya, whose population is made up almost entirely of Sunni Muslims.

"This kind of clause is only useful in countries where there exists many religions, not in Libya where most people are religious Muslims," the report quoted the head of the party, as saying.

"This law needs to be reviewed by the NTC and if it's not changed, we would have to protest it," he added. (ANI)

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