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News Link • Libya

Failing Libya

• by Alison Pargeter

On 20 October 2011, former Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Qadhafi was dragged out of his sewage-pipe hideout to meet his inglorious end. Five years on and things in Libya couldn't be much worse. There is still no centralised authority; killing, abduction and torture are rife; the economy is almost on its knees; and the country has fragmented beyond repair. The triumphalism that accompanied Qadhafi's removal from power can hardly have been more misplaced.

Much of the chaos that has enveloped the country is down to the Libyans themselves. The blame for the incessant squabbling and local turf wars that have eclipsed all sense of a national good must be laid squarely at the door of Libya's new powerbrokers. There is also the legacy of forty years of rule by a ruthless dictator whose uncompromising vision of the state stripped the country of functioning institutions and its population of a political culture.

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