Sharia law will be basis for governing Libya, new leader says
By Rizwan Khatik - Mon Oct 24, 10:51 am
Libya: The leader of Libya’s transitional government declared Sunday that Libya’s revolution had ended, setting the country on the path to elections, and he vowed that the new government would be based on Islamic tenets.
“We are an Islamic country,” Mustafa Abdul-Jalil said. “We take the Islamic religion as the core of our new government. The constitution will be based on our Islamic religion.”
A sea of flag-waving citizens in a crowded square in Benghazi reacted with shouts of “God is great.” Minutes earlier, they had sung the bouncy Italianate national anthem used before Moammar Gadhafi came to power. The song has been revived to help celebrate the downfall of the dictator, who was killed on Thursday.
Abdul-Jalil, chairman of the National Transitional Council, laid out a vision for a new Libya with an Islamist tint, saying Islamic Sharia law would be the “basic source” of legislation, and that existing laws that contradict the teachings of Islam would be nullified.
He outlined several changes to align with Islamic law, including putting caps on interest for bank loans and lifting restrictions on the number of wives Libyan men can take. The Muslim holy book, the Qur’an, allows men up to four wives.
Using Sharia as the main source of legislation is stipulated in the constitution of neighboring Egypt. Still, Egyptian laws remain largely secular as Sharia does not cover all aspects of modern life.