Female MPs in Libya Call for Increase in Women’s Participation in Parliament

(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)

Female members of Libya’s parliament, also known as the House of Representatives (HoR), are calling for a 30 percent increase in women’s participation in all parliamentary delegations.

The 31 women elected in the 2014 Libyan parliament attended a meeting last week in Tunisia which was organized by the United Nations Security Mission in Libya (UNSMIL). Libyan women compared their political experiences with female politicians from Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Niger, Sudan and Tunisia.

UNSMIL released a press briefing stating that “training, capacity development, exchange of best practices and media skills was common threads.”

By 2030 half of the elected members should be female said Libyan MP Naima Dalef.

For that to happen the current number of women in the 200-seat parliament would need to at least double. The challenge for women in politics is much greater now than it ever was as Libya has been struggling to achieve a sense of political stability.

The female parliamentarians launched a campaign with the slogan “Together We Can, Together We Work, Together We Advance For Peace” to strengthen women’s role in Libyan politics.

Martin Kobler, the head of UNSMIL, congratulated the women on their political initiative saying that “key agents for change, peace and progress”.

Libya has been struggling with ongoing political instability which has weakened the country, however, for the first time since Muammar Gaddafi’s 42 year dictatorship ended, political dialogue and engagement is more open and accessible to the Libyan people. During Gaddafi’s rule, political leadership was reserved only for those in his close circle.

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