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Prince Mohammed El Senussi’s Speech on the Occasion of the 71st Anniversary of Libya’s Independence

In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Dear Libyan people,

The anniversary of the independence of our beloved country, that we all meet to celebrate and commemorate today, brings us pride and affection while we recall what our fathers and grandfathers, foremost among them the founding father King Idris al- Senussi, were able to achieve by Allah’s favour, and by their sincerity, honesty and dedication.

Through these qualities they succeeded in bringing together all parts of our country into one united homeland. A united Libya that looked forward to a promising future. A united country governed by both constitution and law.

This anniversary revives our pride in what Libyans were able to achieve over the course of decades. Sadly, it also revives our grief at the current situation of our country, particularly over the past years when the devastating rivalry over money and power, and the misuse of our country’s wealth, have turned this land into an arena for conflict and war, sowing hatred and strife among our people.

Our citizens have suffered from this internal and external manipulation for too long. The time has come to rid ourselves and our country of this dark period in our history. This intolerable suffering must come to an end.

Over the past years, I have had no doubt that our noble people would remain proud and steadfast against the attempts to steal their historical right to regain constitutional legitimacy represented by the Kingdom of Libya, which has been subjected to continuous campaigns of distortion and manipulation, not least of which has been an attempt to hijack our country’s Independence Constitution, after it became clear to all that there is no other way to solve the current situation of crisis in our homeland, save for using the solution that worked before.

I have spent the past months and years meeting and consulting with many national social forces in our country who all agreed, regardless of their different ideas and convictions, that the constitutional legitimacy represented by the Kingdom of Libya is still the most appropriate umbrella for re-uniting our one nation, and that there is no way out of the tragedy that has befallen our country, except through a national dialogue that sets its sights on reaching safety, namely a constitutional monarchy presiding over a democratic state safeguarded by our Independence Constitution.

I have also explained this clear national vision in all my meetings with representatives of international powers. This vision does not accept interpretation or further procrastination in building an internal agreement based on a properly constructed and inclusive political process that carries the hopes of all of our country’s citizens. It is this that will help us reach a path that guarantees that our nation will put in place the necessary building blocks for a prosperous future. We need to use our resources to serve our nation whilst also preserving our wealth to serve future generations.

In these meetings, I have explained that during the coming period, I am willing and able to see through the necessary steps required to work towards a lasting solution for our country. Divergence of views and opinions is part of human nature as created by Allah Almighty. But we must rise above these differences and not allow them to lead to enmity, hatred and yet more divergence. We must all extend our hands to one another to free ourselves from the painful past that only serves to shackle our souls and cloud our minds. That is how we will transcend our painful reality.

All of us must participate in building a bright path forward, for ourselves and for future generations, towards a vision for our homeland where justice, equality and brotherhood prevail.