Top stories from DAWNS Digest.
Meet Your Next President of Libya…
…Who is generally pro-Western and decidedly not an Islamist. “A coalition led by a Western-educated political scientist appeared on Sunday to be beating Islamist parties in Libya’s first election of the post-Qaddafi era, standing apart from an overwhelming Islamist wave sweeping across neighboring Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco in the aftermath of the Arab Spring uprisings. The preliminary results, characterized by independent monitors and party representatives who witnessed the vote count for a new national assembly, may reflect the relative novelty of political debate here as well as the reputation and tribal connections of the coalition’s founder, Mahmoud Jibril. He is a member of Libya’s most populous tribe, the Warfalla, as well as the former interim prime minister who helped lead the de facto rebel government in Benghazi. But Mr. Jibril and his coalition also stood out from other opponents of Islamists around the region because they did not hurl accusations of extremism against those who called for Islamic law. Like the Islamists and almost every other major faction here, Mr. Jibril’s coalition pledged to make Islamic law a main source of legislation, though not the only one.” (NYT http://nyti.ms/LXmkEH)
Donors Pledge $16 Million to Afghanistan
At a big conference in Japan on Sunday, the international community pledged to pony up for development assistance to Afghanistan once NATO withdraws from the country. “International donors offered $16 billion in development aid for Afghanistan on Sunday to show there will not be a mass exodus from the country after most foreign troops pull out in two years. They stressed the aid will be closely monitored to assure it is not squandered through corruption or mismanagement. Donors from about 70 countries and organizations, at a one-day conference in Tokyo, set a baseline for aid in the crucial period through and beyond 2014, when most NATO-led foreign combat troops will leave and the country will assume responsibility for most of its own security…The $16 billion through 2015 is near what the World Bank believes Afghanistan needs to close the gap between how much money it can afford and how much it needs to sustain its transition. The Japanese hosts had said before the conference that they hoped to get pledges of nearly $4 billion per year, so the result was roughly what they had expected. A follow-up meeting is to be held in Britain in 2014.” (AP http://bit.ly/MfgqwV)