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Libya's liberation to be declared on Sunday

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril has said that elections will be held within eight months.

A Libyan man gestures front of a graffiti reading:
A Libyan man gestures front of a graffiti reading: "The greatest Crazy of the World" in Tripoli on Friday.

A MILITARY SPOKESMAN has said that Libya’s interim government will  declare liberation on Sunday.

The governing National Transitional Council (NTC) had previously said the announcement would be made today in the eastern city of Benghazi, the revolution’s birthplace.

However, spokesman Abdel-Rahman Busin explained preparations are under way for a ceremony tomorrow.

It is understood that the decision to hold the declaration in Benghazi – and not the capital Tripoli – hast not changed. The eastern city was the stronghold of anti-Gaddafi fighters over the past seven months.

Back in 1969, it was also from Benghazi that Gaddafi, as a 27-year-old lieutenant, led his coup against the then-ruler King Idris. However, on gaining control of Libya, he took up residence in Tripoli.

Tomorrow’s declaration will allow Libya’s new rulers to move forward with efforts to transform the oil-rich nation into a democracy. It comes after months of fighting to overthrow Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s regime.

His death on Thursday marked the end of that battle but political struggles may lie ahead.

Democratic elections

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Jordan today, prime minister Mahmoud Jibril said that Libyans will be allowed to vote within eight months.

According to Reuters, Jibril said “some sort of parliament” elected as a national council would draft a new constitution and form an interim government.

The PM, who said he would leave office once the NTC took control of the whole country, said he felt “relieved” by the death of Gaddafi.

He also said that the priority must be getting arms off the streets of Libya.

Yesterday evening, NATO announced that it is “very close” to completing its operations in the North African country. It will decide on an exact withdrawal date at a meeting next week but October 31 seems likely.

-Additional reporting by AP

More: Nato says Libya operations almost finished>

See our full coverage of events in Libya>

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