Libyan Court Rules Appointment of Prime Minister Maetig Unlawful

Libya’s top court annulled the election by parliament of an Islamist-backed prime minister, deepening a political crisis in the North Africa oil producer.

The Libya Supreme Constitutional Court in Tripoli said the election of Ahmed Maetig was unconstitutional, Al-Nabaa television reported. Several violations of the national charter were recorded during the vote, and evidence will soon be made public, the court said.

“The GNC should comply with the Supreme Court decision, it’s non-negotiable,” Omar Hamidan, spokesman for the parliament, or General National Congress, said. “Mr. Maiteg should comply with the court’s decision, otherwise this will create a huge political and legal issue for Libya.” Lawmakers will convene tomorrow to discuss the ruling.

Libya has been mired in unrest in the three years since the overthrow of Muammar Qaddafi, with the chaos halting the recovery of crude output and the country divided into virtual fiefdoms controlled by armed groups with competing interests.

Maetig, a businessman from the western city of Misrata who is supported by pro-Islamist political parties and militias, was elected last month following the resignation of Abdullah al-Thinni after an attack on his home.

Al-Thinni then contested the vote and vowed to remain in the post until a ruling by the nation’s top court.

Elections are due 25 June to replace the interim GNC.

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