In elections broadcast live, the High State Council (HSC) elected Mohamed Takala as its new head today. Incumbent HSC head Khaled Al-Mishri lost by 62 votes to 67 in the second round of voting out of a total vote of 131.
Takala had gone through in the first round of votes by 39 votes to Mishri’s 49 votes.
Mishri had won the previous 5 elections – since he was first elected in 2018.
Takala hails from the city of Khoms and is an academic. He holds a Phd in computer networks. He held several positions in HSC committees.
Takala’s election was seen as a surprise result and is interpreted more as a rejection of Mishri rather than an election of Takala.
The HSC had split over the last few years, and it is hoped Takala would reunite the HSC. Mishri and the Speaker of the House of Representatives (HoR) Ageela Saleh had become allies recently as both wanted another interim government to be chosen before a general election is held. They are seen as status quo figures who are not interested in the holding of general elections.
The appointment of another interim government is opposed by the Tripoli-based Libyan prime minister Abd Alhamid Aldabaiba who wants elections to be held without a joint or compromise government favoured by the HoR and HSC. Another interim government is also opposed by the UN and the internationally community in general.
Al-Mishri is given credit by critics for at least allowing regular re-elections of the HSC leadership in contrast to Ageela Saleh who has held on to his positions as head of HoR since its election in 2014.