Africa

Libya: Opposition outline post-Gaddafi 'road map'

Street vendor in Benghazi, Libya, on 5/5/11 Image copyright AP
Image caption Food and other essential supplies are running low in rebel-held areas

Libya's opposition has set out a political "road map" for the country if and when Col Gaddafi falls from power.

It includes installing an interim government while a new constitution is drafted and elections held.

Mahmoud Jibril, a member of the rebels' Transitional National Council (NTC), also welcomed an aid plan approved by the 22-nation contact group on Libya.

Separately, France has told 14 Libyan diplomats loyal to Colonel Gaddafi to leave the country within two days.

The French foreign ministry said they had been declared "persona non grata".

'Good start'

Mr Jibril set out plans for a post-Gaddafi Libya to members of the contact group, who met in Rome on Thursday.

He explained that an interim government would immediately take over to provide day-to-day governance and keep order, the Associated Press news agency reports.

It would comprise members from the NTC, technocrats from the Gaddafi regime, senior military and intelligence officers and a supreme court judge, he said.

A constitution would be drawn up and put to a referendum, followed a few months later by parliamentary and presidential elections.

He said that, as a dry run, the NTC would "shortly" be asking the United Nations to oversee municipal elections in current rebel-held areas.

At the meeting, Mr Jibril also welcomed as a "good start" plans by the international contact group to set up a temporary fund to provide humanitarian assistance in rebel-held areas.

Image copyright AP
Image caption A fund to provide aid for rebel areas was welcomed by Mahmoud Jibril

The NTC has said it needs $2bn-$3bn (£1.2bn-£1.8bn) in the coming months for military salaries, food, medicine and other basic supplies.

Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, host of the Rome meeting, said countries had pledged $250m for immediate assistance.

Washington has pledged $53m (£32m) and authorised up to $25m (£15m) in assistance to the rebels, including medical supplies, boots, tents, rations and protective gear. The first shipment is due to arrive in Benghazi in the coming days.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that the US is trying to free more than $30bn it had frozen in Libyan assets, making it "available to help the Libyan people".

The UK has already provided $21.5m (£13m) in aid to the rebels, which British Foreign Secretary William Hague insisted would not be spent on weapons.

Mr Hague said efforts would also be made to explore how Col Gaddafi's government could be prevented from exporting oil or importing refined products.

Rebel forces in Libya hold much of the east of the country, around Benghazi, while Col Gaddafi holds most of the west.

Nato is enforcing a UN mandate to protect civilians caught in the conflict.