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Last updateMer, 28 Jan 2015 10am

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Interim PM pleads for extra budget

Tripoli, Libya - Libya's acting Prime Minister Abdallah Al-Theni has pleaded for an extra budget to allow the interim government to carry out its mission. 'So that the government can resolve the problems during the transitional period, I appeal for the allocation of an emergency budget to carry out its actions and take up the security challenges,' Mr Al-Theni said during his maiden press conference here.

The budget for this year has yet to be approved by the parliament because of the crisis of confidence between the Congress and the former Prime Minister, Ali Zeidan, who was ousted via a no-confidence vote.

The interim Premier called on Libyans to put national interest above any other consideration and to work hard to rebuild the new Libya.

He reassured his compatriots that he would continue to work for the country's political transition.

'I confirm that the government will open national dialogue with all,' said Mr al-Theni, who was flanked by Minister of Culture Habib Lemine and interim Minister of Oil Omar Chakmak.

He said his priority is to restore security to the city of Benghazi, which has witnessed assassinations in various districts, as well as in Derna (East) and in other regions of the country.

On the possibility of using force to end the blockade of oil ports controlled by armed groups in the East of the country, Mr Al-Thani said 'we are not considering the use of force against fellow Libyans.

'Dialogue will be the essential tool and we are willing to discuss with everybody (…) and willing to move and meet all civil society activists, personalities, notables and tribal dignitaries to discuss with them. The problem will be resolved through dialogue.'

On Monday, Nouri Abousahmein, chairman of the General National Congress (GNC-Parliament), the country's highest parliamentary and political body, set up a special military task force to lift the blockade.

On Tuesday, GNC passed a vote of no confidence on Prime Minister Ali Zeidan and designated Al-Theni as the interim Premier for two weeks

The local media reported that Zeidan has left the country for an unnamed European country, despite a travel ban on him.

Pana 13/03/2014