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August 7, 2013 9:09 am

Libyan Deputy PM Resigns Amid Ongoing Chaos and Violence

avatar by John Rossomando

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Armed man stands outside U.S. Consulate in Libya as it burns. Photo: Twitter.

Libya’s Deputy Prime Minister Awadh al-Barassi resigned Saturday to protest the dysfunctional nature of the nation’s post-Gaddafi government. Libya remains a lot like the Wild West, where terrorist militias control much of the country and the police and military forces remain weak.

The state of anarchy that allowed al-Qaeda terrorists to sack the U.S. consulate in Benghazi last September still persists.

Much of eastern Libya remains under the control of various militias – some with al-Qaeda links – and the interim government exercises little direct control.

Al-Barassi slammed the government for being unable to prevent a security breakdown in the country that includes a string of political assassinations. The interim government has also failed to gain the trust of the Libyan people and adequately fund its ministries.

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“The lack of authority has hindered all efforts to deal with the government’s privileges and responsibilities towards the security situation in Benghazi and Libya as a whole,” Al-Barassi said in an Asharq Al-Awsat report. “Most of the problems that occurred in various areas, and what followed in the form of a deterioration in security and the escalation in violence, were caused by the government’s policies.”

Many Libyans blame infighting and political rivalries for the militias’ rise and the country being awash with weapons. Libyan weapons have made their way all over the Middle East and Africa, from Mali to Syria, as a result of the chaos that followed the Arab Spring.

Libya has struggled to rebuild its army and police forces in the subsequent two years.

Several incidents have taken place in the past week that underscore the ongoing anarchy.

Libyan army colonel was shot dead in the eastern Libyan city of Derna and another was wounded in Benghazi. In another incident, a car bomb wounded a Libyan naval officer in Benghazi on July 29. Finally, more than 1,200 inmates broke out of Benghazi’s central prison in late July.

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