National Transitional Council
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A map showing the current situation in Libya
|Formation||27 February 2011|
|Type||Political organisation / administrative body|
|Purpose||To act as the political face of the 2011 Libyan uprising|
Chair of the Council
|Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil|
Chair of Crisis Committee
|Libyan People's Army|
In Libya, the National Transitional Council (Arabic: المجلس الوطني الانتقالي, al-majlis al-waTanī al-intiqālī) is a body formed by anti-Gaddafi rebels during the 2011 uprising. Its formation was announced in the city of Benghazi on 27 February 2011 and its intended purpose is to act as the "political face of the revolution". In some media outlets, it is referred to as the National Libyan Council or the Libyan National Council. On 5 March 2011, the council issued a statement in which it declared itself to be the "sole representative all over Libya".
After popular movements overturned the rulers of Tunisia and Egypt, its immediate neighbours to the west and east, Libya experienced a full-scale uprising beginning in February 2011. By 20 February, the unrest had spread to Tripoli. As of late February 2011, much of Libya had slipped out of Gaddafi's control, falling to the Anti-Gaddafi forces. Eastern Libya, centered around the second city and vital port of Benghazi, was firmly under the control of the opposition. The opposition began to organise themselves into a functioning government.
On 24 February 2011, opposition politicians, former millitary officers, tribal leaders, academics and businessmen held a meeting of in the eastern city of Al Bayda. The meeting was chaired by former justice minister Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil, who quit the government a few days before. The delegates stressed the importance of the national unity of Libya and stated that Tripoli is the capital city. They discussed proposals for interim administration with many delegates asking for UN intervention in Libya. The podium at the meeting displayed the pre-Gaddafi era flag.
On 25 February 2011, Al-Jazeera TV reported that talks are taking place between "personalities from eastern and western Libya" to form an interim government for the post-Gadaffi era. On 26 February, it was reported that former justice minister Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil was leading the process of forming an interim body, to be based in Benghazi. Mr Abud Al Jeleil stated that "Gaddafi alone bore responsibility for the crimes that have occurred" in Libya, he also insisted on the unity of Libya and that Tripoli is the capital. The efforts to form an alternative government have been supported by the Libyan ambassador in the United States, Ali Suleiman Aujali. The Libyan deputy ambassador to the United Nations, Ibrahim Omar Al Dabashi, has stated that he supported a new alternative government "in principle".
Establishment of the council
The National Transitional Council was formed on 27 February 2011 to act as "the political face of the revolution". Its spokesman Hafiz Ghoga made clear at the launch press conference that the national council is not a provisional government and Ghoga also added that the newly formed council was not contacting foreign governments and did not want them to intervene. He later clarified that an airstrike mandated by the United Nations would not be considered a foreign intervention.
An Al Jazeera English journalist in Benghazi has reported that a fully fledged interim government will not be formed until Tripoli is under opposition control. This is in contrast to claims made by former justice minister Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil on the previous day about the formation of a provisional government. These comments have now been clarified by the council as his "personal views". Another council spokesperson stated that Al Jeleil did not have the consensus of all rebel groups and towns before making his announcement about an interim government and this had caused "bitter feelings". Mr Ghoga also made clear that if a provisional government was indeed formed, it would not be led by Al Jeleil and that his announcement had left some opposition leaders "surprised and baffled". Al Jeleil is regarded by some opposition leaders as being too closely associated with the Gaddhafi regime.
|This article is part of a series on the|
politics and government of
Al Jazeera English is reporting that each city or town under opposition control will be given five seats on the new council and that contact will be established with new cities that fall under opposition control to allow them to join the council. The identities of members of the council were not disclosed at the launch conference. What is known is that human rights lawyer Hafiz Ghoga is the spokesperson for the new council. An Al Jazeera English journalist in Benghazi is stating that Mustafa Mohamed Abud Al Jeleil still has a leadership role within the new council  and it was later established that he will be Chairperson of the council. The council met formally for the first time on 5 March 2011 when it was announced that the council has 30 members. The names of some of the members are being kept secret to prevent threats to their families that are still in Government held areas of Libya. 
On March 5, a crisis committee was set up to act as the executive arm of the council. The committee consists of Omar Hariri as the head of the military, Ali al-Essawi as the head of foreign affairs, and Mahmoud Jebril as the chairperson of the committee. Other ministers will be announced at later dates. 
In opposition-held Benghazi, a 15 member "local committee" made up of lawyers, judges and respected local people has been formed in order to provide civic administration and public services within the city.  Residents have organised to direct traffic and collect refuse. Many shops and businesses have opened again. A newspaper  and two local radio stations have also been established.
Similar "local committees" are being formed in other cities controlled by opposition groups.
The council has stated that it would like to be recognised by the international community. The Chair of the Council told Al Jazeera that "There are official contacts with European and Arab [countries]".  
The following countries have expressued their support for the council:
- France - on 5 March 2011, French foreign ministry spokesperson Bernard Valero stated France's support for the council saying that France "pledges support for the principles that motivate it and the goals it has set itself". French foreign minister Alain Juppé referred to Gaddafi's actions as "criminal folly".
- United Kingdom - On 5 March 2011, Defence Secretary Liam Fox stated that "a small British diplomatic team" was in Benghazi 
- 2011 Libyan uprising
- International reactions to the 2011 Libyan uprising
- List of officials who protested or resigned during the 2011 Libyan protests
- "Live Blog - Libya | Al Jazeera Blogs". Blogs.aljazeera.net. 17 February 2011. Retrieved 23 February 2011.
- "News | Libya February 17th". Libyafeb17.com. Retrieved 23 February 2011.
- "Map of How the Protests Unfolded in Libya". New York Times. 25 February 2011. Retrieved 26 February 2011]. Check date values in:
- "Anti-Gaddafi figures say form national council". 28 February 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- Al-Jazeera English (27 February 2011). "Libya opposition launches council". Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- New York Times (1 March 2011). [http:/nytimes.com/2011/03/02/world/africa/02libya.html "Libyan Rebels Said to Debate Seeking U.N. Airstrikes"] Check
|url=value (help). Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- Reported on Al-Jazeera English TV by Hoda Abdel-Hamid
- "Libya rebels set up first political leadership". 27 February 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- "Rebel National Libya Council sets up crisis committee". Reuters. 5 March 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- Paul Schemm (24 February 2011). "Libya's second city, Benghazi, learns to govern itself after decades of oppression". The Associated Press. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- BBC. "BBC Lybia Live Coverage". Retrieved 4 March 2011.
- "First Edition of the Benghazi Newspaper". 24 February 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- Lourdes Garcia-Navarro (23 February 2011). "Provisional Government Forming In Eastern Libya". Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- UPDATE 1-Libya rebels form council, reject Gaddafi talks, Mohammed Abbas, Reuters, February 27, 2011 3:33pm GMT
- Other groups
- National Conference for the Libyan Opposition
- National Front for the Salvation of Libya
- Libya Watanona
- Libyan Youth Movement