The Libyan government on Tuesday vowed to disarm Tripoli by the end of December, the capital’s city council chief said after talks with Prime Minister Abdel Rahim al-Kib.
“The government has promised us to disarm Tripoli by December 31,” Abdul Razzak Buhajar, whose city has been inundated by former rebel fighters who ousted Muammar Qaddafi, told reporters.
“They have assured the Tripoli council that the entire city will be disarmed,” the council president said after a meeting with Kib and members of the National Transitional Council (NTC) ruling Libya.
Earlier on Tuesday, dozens of protesters blocked off several main roads in Tripoli to demand that fighters from other parts of the country pull out of the capital, which the rebels seized from Qaddafi’s forces in August.
On October 5, Libya’s new leaders ordered all heavy weapons to be removed from Tripoli, warning that their prolonged presence risked giving a bad image of the revolution which ousted Qaddafi.
In the face of international concerns, the NTC has insisted that despite the proliferation of arms on the street, the Qaddafi regime’s looted weaponry has not left Libya.
Buhajar told AFP on the sidelines of the news conference that residents of Tripoli would hold a rally on Wednesday to “denounce the presence of arms” in the Libyan capital.
The rally would be held in Tripoli’s landmark Martyrs Square.