Tripoli, 2 May 2013:
The backlash against militiamen currently besieging ministries in Tripoli is gaining momentum, with people from neighbouring towns heading to Tripoli to protest against the use of arms to try and force the General National Congress (GNC) to vote in favour of the Political Isolation Law.
Today, some 200 people from Zawia joined a protest in Tripoli’s Martyrs’ Square, taking a stand against the militiamen who have closed and surrounded the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Justice Ministry. They marched from Martyrs’ Square to Algeria Square and back again.
One protestor, a Tripoli-based journalist, told the Libya Herald that the protest was: “Against the use of arms by militias to impose their opinions and threaten the legitimacy of the government.”
He added: “We want people in the militias to join the police and the army.”
Placards read ‘Hey, youth of capital, we want a decisive night’, and ‘ Where are you, free Tripoli people?’, and ‘Yes for peaceful demonstration, No for armed ones’, as well as ‘Yes for the Ali Zaidan government’.
The demonstrators said that they had came to reject the instability that Tripoli is struggling with on a daily basis and that militiamen did not respect the will of the people. They also said they were afraid that there might be international intervention if security continued to deteriorate.
This evening there were still protestors in both Algeria Square and Martyrs’ Square.
Some of the protestors have also been voicing their support for the elected GNC and the government, according to the Libyan news agency LANA.
Social media networks were saying that more people from other neighbouring cities were planning to come to Tripoli to join the protest against the militias in and around Martyrs’ Square. [/restrict]