Libya: Research and Information Visit regarding Indigenous Populations / Communities, 2005


The African Commission’s Working Group on Indigenous Populations / Communities conducted a research and information visit to Libya from 11 to 25 August 2005. The mission was undertaken by Mr. Khattali Med Ag M. Ahmed, who is a member of the Working Group. The aim of the visit was to

  • Inform the Libyan government, regional and local authorities, national human rights organisations, media, civil society organisations and associations, development agencies and other interested players about the report and the efforts of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights with regard to indigenous peoples;
  • Collect all information relating to the human rights situation of indigenous peoples in Libya with a view to providing an in-depth report to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights;
  • Distribute the African Commission’s report on indigenous peoples to key individuals and institutions.


  1. Encourage Libya to ratify ILO Convention 169 on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  2. Urge Libya to grant cultural and political rights to all its citizens, including indigenous populations;
  3. The Libyan State should raise awareness among its Amazigh population, including the Tuareg, of their right to preserve their identity and their culture by opening up the mass media to them and by helping them to form associations;
  4. Encourage Libya to show more interest in Amazigh culture and language, and to allow this culture and language to flourish. Libya should thus seek to promote and preserve the Amazigh cultural heritage, language and history in Libya;
  5. Urge Libya to recognise Tamazight as one of the national and official languages and create an institution responsible for promoting this language40;
  6. Call upon the country to include references to the Amazigh history and culture in school curricula;
  7. Encourage Libya to ensure that the Amazigh regions overcome their economic backwardness in relation to the rest of the country;
  8. A meeting of the Working Group should be held in the Amazigh region of Libya (Ghât or Ifren) in order to dispel the fear that the Amazigh feel, despite the clear and positive changes in the country;
  9. Urge Libya to conduct a widespread dissemination of the report of the African Commission’s Working Group on Indigenous Populations / Communities and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights;
  10. Encourage Libya to report back to the next session of the African Commission on the decisions it has taken to implement these recommendations.