Drawing from an Arab Barometer survey undertaken in March and April 2014, Fathi Ali and Michael Robbins document the evolution of Libyans’ opinions on their country’s institutions, desired political system, and their self-perception in relation to other regional and global actors.
The researchers point out that, despite economic distress and deteriorating security, a good share of the Libyan population still feels a sense of victory following the Arab Spring. However, this could be called into question if no solid institutions and leadership come to hold the State’s reins and ensure security. A great obstacle to establishing such a stronger State lies in the divisions within the population, mainly along partisan lines: there is no clear preference for any system, nor, despite a commitment to democracy, any certainty about its suitability for the country. Contrary to common beliefs, Libyans express relative openness to stronger security and economic ties with the United States, though a majority believes that Washington should not interfere in the Arab World’s affairs. On foreign policy, most Libyans surveyed consider that their country should seek future partnerships with regional actors such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Tunisia.
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Article by Fathi Ali and Michael Robbins, Arab Reform Initiative.
This article was originally published here.