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Libya: court rejects appeal against Haftar's candidacy

Libya's eastern military chief Khalifa Haftar gives a speech at the local headquarters of the High National Election Commission in the eastern city of Benghazi on 16 November 2021. [ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP via Getty Images]
Libya's eastern military chief Khalifa Haftar gives a speech at the local headquarters of the High National Election Commission in the eastern city of Benghazi on 16 November 2021. [ABDULLAH DOMA/AFP via Getty Images]

A Libyan court in Benghazi yesterday rejected an appeal filed against the candidacy of retired Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar in the country's presidential election next month.

Local media reported that the appeal was filed by Abdul-Majid Saif Al-Nasr, who is also standing in the election. The media added that another appeal against Haftar's candidacy is being "considered" by the court.

Moreover, another court in the Libyan capital Tripoli was reported to have accepted an appeal filed by the former internationally-recognised Government of National Accord's interior minister, Fathi Bashagha, against the candidacy of the incumbent Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh. The court has thus annulled the decision of the High National Election Commission to accept Dbeibeh's candidacy.

Dbeibeh submitted his official documents to the HNEC on 21 November, after announcing that he would resort to the judiciary to challenge the election law which had excluded him from running for president.

READ: Why is Libya's presidential race so overcrowded?

In a similar context, the Sabha court adjourned a session slated on Sunday to discuss an appeal filed by the son of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi, against an HNEC decision to exclude him from the presidential election. Court officials told the media that the postponement was due to the "absence of one of the three required judges."

The HNEC announced last Wednesday a preliminary list of 73 candidates for the election, including Haftar and Dbeibeh. Twenty-five others were excluded, one of whom was Gaddafi.

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