Ali Muhammad al-Sallabi, or al-Salabi (Arabic: علي محمد الصلابي; born 1963 in Benghazi) is a Muslim cleric, religious scholar and Islamist politician from Libya. In November 2011, al-Sallabi has announced the formation of the National Gathering for Freedom, Justice and Development, an Islamic party that would follow "Turkish-style moderation" and which will run in the country's upcoming elections.
Under the rule of Muammar Gaddafi, he was detained in the infamous Abu Salim prison for eight years. After being released, he studied theology in Saudi Arabia and Sudan, obtaining his doctorate from the Omdurman Islamic University in 1999. Subsequently, he went into exile in Qatar. Al-Sallabi has close ties to Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual head of the international Muslim Brotherhood. He is also associated with Abdelhakim Belhadj, emir of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) and one of the commanders of the National Liberation Army. Al-Sallabi acted as a mediator in negotiations between Saif al-Islam Gaddafi and the LIFG. Later, he played a key role in providing the rebels in the Libyan Civil War with Qatari humanitarian aid, money, and arms. In October 2011, the international relations expert Daniel Wagner described al-Sallabi as Libya's most influential politician.
Al-Sallabi has sharply criticised Mahmoud Jibril, the president of the National Transitional Council, Libya's interim government. Al-Sallabi has denounced Jibril and his allies as "extreme secularists" who would try to enrich themselves. He claimed that the new administration was "worse than Gaddafi."
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