Ban urges Libya to try prisoners or release them
London: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said Libya faces serious political and security challenges, with a resurgence of several local conflicts and increased instability in the east, as well as "huge challenges" in trying to secure the country’s borders, control a proliferation of weapons, promote national reconciliation and rebuild the justice system.
In a report to the UN Security Council, the secretary-general urged the country’s leaders to charge or release an estimated 7,000 detainees, many held since last year’s revolution that ousted long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
Ban said elections to a new national assembly on July 07 marked "a major milestone" in Libya’s transition towards a modern democratic state and drew to a close decades of autocratic rule.
“Assurances from Libyan officials that incidents of torture or mistreatment would be investigated and perpetrators duly punished have not been translated into effective action,” the Daily Express quoted Ban, as saying.
The secretary-general said he remained deeply concerned about the length of detention and treatment of detainees, citing cases of mistreatment and torture, including three men who died at a detention facility run by local security authorities in Misrata on April 13
He also urged Libya's leaders "to form a new government that is inclusive, broadly participatory and has the support of the Libyan people".
The oil-rich North African nation remains deeply divided following Gaddafi's killing during a brutal civil war. Awash with arms, Libya is trying to build its institutions from scratch as Gaddafi ruled alone for four decades, without a legislature, the paper said.