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The head of the Cyrenaica National Council in the eastern region of Libya declared the area semi-autonomous, a sign of growing territorial tensions in the country more than two years after Muammar Qaddafi was killed in an uprising.
Ahmed Al Zubeir As-Senussi, the council’s head, announced in a June 1 ceremony that the eastern Libyan region would be self-governed and have its own legislature, the state-owned news agency, LANA, reported.
There was no official reaction from the country’s central government in Tripoli. Thousands of people rallied in March 2012 in Tripoli and Benghazi, the second-largest city, in support of a unified Libya after some regional leaders had called for more autonomy.
Cyrenaica, called Barqa in Arabic, will be governed in accordance with the 1951 constitution, LANA cited As-Senussi as saying. As-Senussi wants to revive the federal system used under the late King Idris I who ruled over the regions of Cyrenaica, Tripolitania and Fezzan before unifying them in 1963. King Idris was overthrown by Qaddafi in 1969.
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