Aguila Saleh, the speaker of Libya’s eastern-based House of Representatives and a political ally of warlord Khalifa Haftar, announced Wednesday that he will run in the country’s presidential election in December.
“We are working to overcome the past, to close the page of conflict in the country, to open a new page and look to the future in a healthier way and to initiate national reconciliation,” Saleh told the Dubai-based Al Hadath television channel.
Claiming that he is willing to “unite the institutions in the country, support security and create a mechanism for accountability and control,” he said “national reconciliation is a cornerstone for the stability of our country.”
On Tuesday, Libyan warlord Khalifa Haftar announced his bid for the presidency. To date, Haftar has been an impediment to the country’s democratic processes.
Libya’s presidential and parliamentary elections are set to take place on Dec. 24 under an UN-sponsored agreement reached by Libyan political rivals during meetings in Tunisia on Nov. 15, 2020.
The oil-rich country’s electoral commission on Nov. 8 opened registration for candidates in the polls despite ongoing tensions between the parliament, High Council of State and unity government regarding electoral powers and laws.
Libyans hope that the upcoming elections will contribute to ending an armed conflict that has plagued the country for years.