Libya: NPWJ supports Transitional Justice Outreach Initiative in Sebha

9 Sep, 2013 | Press Releases

Sebha, Libya, 9 September 2013

In the framework of its project aimed at promoting accountability, rule of law and transitional justice in Libya, No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) supported and contributed to a Transitional Justice (TJ) Outreach Initiative in Sebha, the administrative capital of the southern Fezzan region situated approximately 700 km from Tripoli, organised by the local civil society organisation (CSO) Ahrar Libya Organisation.

Under this initiative, two workshops on Transitional Justice were held in Sebha on 5 and 7 September 2013, with more than eighty participants including local and international experts, representatives from local civil society organisations, representatives of the Sebha Local Council, military officers, community leaders, members of the local press as well as members of the local business community.

The aim of the workshops was to raise awareness about accountability and transitional justice across different sections of society in Sebha and the surrounding area, and to encourage dialogue, debate and discussion about transitional justice mechanisms as well as specific challenges encountered within the Libyan context. The workshops introduced participants to key transitional justice concepts and mechanisms, citing examples from other countries and emphasising the importance of such processes in democratic transition and as a path to achieving reconciliation. The current transitional justice process in Libya was explained and the main technical issues facing the realisation of accountability, redress and reconciliation outlined.The dialogue centred around themes of ending impunity, focusing on the needs of victims and the need for a bottom-up approach to transitional justice in Libya in which civil society must play a key role.

At the end of both workshops, participants produced a list of practical recommendations designed to strengthen transitional justice mechanisms in the south of Libya. The Fezzan region consists of sparsely populated desert and participants said that they often feel neglected by and dislocated from the central authorities on the coast. In both workshops there was an overwhelming feeling that in order for accountability, redress and dialogue to be achieved on a national level, the south must first strengthen its capacity to influence the national debate on TJ.

The recommendations included: forming a network of civil society organisations (CSOs) in the south to focus on transitional justice and accountability; organising regular capacity building workshops for CSOs in the region; organising workshops on TJ with Libyan experts across the south to generate national dialogue; organising training and workshops on TJ specifically for influential tribal figures in the region; providing training for journalists on TJ so they communicate key concepts with the public; involving youth in the TJ outreach campaign; and promoting the role of women within TJ.

NPWJ in Libya
NPWJ has been working on the Libyan transition since early 2011, in the framework of its project to support Libya’s democratic transition through justice and accountability. As the country embarks on legislative reforms, the Libyan authorities can break with the legacy of impunity and abuses that typified Gaddafi’s rule with a new respect for the rule of law and a commitment to restoring justice and dignity to victims. Doing so requires not only the investigation and prosecution of the crimes and violence perpetrated during the revolution, but also efforts to confront a history of oppression and human rights abuses that dates back decades under the rule of the former regime.

For further information on the activities of NPWJ in Libya please contact Stefano Moschini, Libya Program Coordinator, at or +218917450375.