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Iran Press TV

Libya militia groups warn lawmakers to leave their posts

Iran Press TV

Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:42PM GMT

Two influential militia groups have given the Libyan parliament members until the end of Tuesday evening to resign.

A joint statement by the al-Qaaqaa and al-Sawa'iq militia groups called on the parliament 'to hand over power' by the end of the night.

The militants from the Libyan town of Zintan have also threatened to capture any lawmaker ignoring the deadline.

Senior Libyan military Major General Khalifa Haftar has recently called for the suspension of the interim parliament and the formation of a presidential committee to govern until new elections are held.

Libyan parliament term expired on Feb. 7, but legislators voted to extend it with plans to hold new elections in coming months.

Libyan lawmakers however have condemned the militia ultimatum as a coup threat.

Reports say there were no immediate signs of any troop movements or activity outside the parliament in Tripoli, the prime minister's office or any ministries.

Libyans rose up against former dictator Muammar Gaddafi's four-decade rule in February 2011 and deposed him in August 2011. He was slain on October 20 of the same year.

Militiamen played a key role in ousting Gaddafi. Libya has since been the scene of numerous clashes between the militia groups and government forces.

The former rebels refuse to lay down their arms despite efforts by the central government to impose law and order.


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