January 22, 2012
BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Mustafa Abdel Jalil, the head of Libya’s ruling National Transitional Council (NTC), warned on Sunday the country could be heading towards a “bottomless pit” after protesters stormed a government office in Benghazi when he was inside.
A crowd demanding the resignation of the Libyan government smashed windows and forced their way into the NTC’s local headquarters late on Saturday, in the most serious show of anger at the new authorities since Muammar Gaddafi was ousted.
The NTC has the support of the Western powers who helped force out Gaddafi in a nine-month conflict, but it is unelected, has been slow to restore basic public services, and some Libyans say too many of its members are tarnished by ties to Gaddafi.
Speaking to reporters at a hotel in Benghazi, Abdel Jalil warned the protests risked undermining the country’s already fragile stability.