- Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi's son has announced his withdrawal from political life. Seif al-Islam made his announcement before young supporters in the town of Sebha 800 kilometres south of capital Tripoli late on Wednesday.
Mr al-Islam who has previously denied reports that he was being groomed to take over from his father said he has been obliged to intervene politically, but said this was no longer necessary, as Libya now had institutions and systems it lacked in the past.
Although Mr al-Islam has no official role in government in the past four years, he has gained international recognition due to his interventions in various government departments in Libya.
In his televised speech on Wednesday, Mr Qaddafi's son said he was satisfied with his role in solving country's domestic and international problems, such as the Lockerbie case and the affair of six Bulgarian medics jailed for almost a decade in Libyan jails on AIDS and misconduct charges.
"I have achieved my programme. The train is currently on rails. I have no more big battles to fight and my position is becoming embarrassing," Mr al-Islam said, further indicating that situation has changed in Libya.
He said decision-making process should not be held in hands of a few people and again urged for creation of more civil societies, an independent media and a judiciary enshrined in a new constitution.
Mr al-Islam expressed hope that reforms were underway to revamp the country's political system into one that could serve as an example in the region.
He also called for building a better future based independent institutions and a flourishing civic society following a 2003 turning point in its diplomatic ties with the West.
With exception of powerful Qaddafi's Foundation run by Seif al-Islam, civil society is just about absent in Libya. Two non-governmental organisations, Association for Justice and Human Rights and the Centre for Democracy, were recently banned by Libyan authorities.
United States lifted some sanctions against Libya, removed the Tripoli government from its terrorism blacklist and restored diplomatic ties after Libya accepted responsibility for the Lockerbie airliner bombing and pledged not to seek nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.
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