A Libyan-born Jew living in London, Raphael Luzon, has made clear his intention to stand in forthcoming elections in Libya or be part of the next Libyan government.
Faced with criticism that he did not have a Libyan passport, Luzon retorted that he had been stripped of his Libyan citizenship and passport when he and his family were forced to leave the country in 1967. (They acquired Italian citizenship.) If he acquired a Libyan passport, he might still be disqualified from running as a holder of dual-citizenship. However, Luzon argues that most of the current Libyan leaders have dual-citizenship. Luzon appealed to Libyan friends to help him surmount this technical obstacle.
Luzon convened a global video conference of 350 Libyan Jews recently. The conference was held to discuss the preservation of Jewish heritage, especially Tripoli's Dar al Bishi synagogue and Jewish cemeteries. They affirmed their determination not to let Libya, once a country of ethnic and religious diversity, become a monolithic state representing one tribe and one religion.
'We must not allow our pages to be ripped from Libya's great and rich history book," Luzon wrote on his Facebook page.
Despite all talk of democracy and pluralism, however, fighting is still going on in Libya, with both Turkey and Egypt stepping up their military engagement in the country.
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