TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Libyan Islamists and their liberal rivals have held their last rallies just before a deadline to stop campaigning in the first national elections that follow the overthrow of dictator Moammar Gadhafi are to be held.
The Saturday vote for the 200-member transitional parliament follows a ruinous 2011 civil war. Nine months after it ended in October, the country is deeply divided.
Late Thursday, a motorcade carrying posters of the Alliance of National Forces, led by secular-leaning former premier Mahmoud Jibril, took to the streets. The National Front, which descends from a Gadhafi-era opposition movement, lit the sky over the capital with fireworks. A party affiliated with Libya's Muslim Brotherhood and another Islamist group are also considered top contenders.
The 24-hour campaign ban takes effect Friday.