Skip to main content

Women face setbacks in new Libya

Women in Libya seem to have been better off under Moammar Gadhafi’s rule, when they had better access to education and work and polygamy was virtually obsolete.
Libyans celebrate in Tripoli's landamark Martyrs square on February 17, 2015 the upcoming fourth anniversary of the Libyan revolution which toppled strongman Moamer Kadhafi. Islamist militants have thrived in Libya since Kadhafi was toppled and killed in the NATO-backed 2011 uprising, with authorities struggling to contain dozens of militant groups with diverse motivations and ideologies. AFP PHOTO / MAHMUD TURKIA        (Photo credit should read MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)

On June 25, right after she cast her vote for the new Council of Representatives, Salwa Bugaighis was murdered at her home in Benghazi in eastern Libya. She was Libya’s most prominent female lawyer, a member of the former National Transitional Council (NTC) that led the rebel movement in 2011 and well-known civil activist. In February, Libya was shocked again by news of murder targeting yet another well-known activist in Tripoli: Intissar al-Hasaari and her aunt were killed at a busy road west of Tripoli's city center.

Those two cases made headlines inside and outside the country, because the victims were well-known public activists. However, many more violent crimes against women go unreported. So far, not a single murder case has been thoroughly investigated, let alone solved and the killers brought to justice.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.