Tribal and political leaders in eastern Libya declared Cyrenaica an autonomous region during a ceremony held in the city of Benghazi on Tuesday.
The leaders also appointed a council to manage regional affairs. Ahmed Zubair al-Senussi was elected as chairman of the council at the ceremony attended by 3,000 delegates.
Cyrenaica, known as Barca in Arabic, stretches from the central coastal city of Sirte, where slain ruler Muammar Gaddafi was born, to the Egyptian border. The tribal leaders plan to name Benghazi, the cradle of the protests leading to Gaddafi’s fall, as the autonomous area’s capital.
Also, under their plan, the region will have its own legislatures, courts and police force, while the power of foreign policy making will be left to the central government in Tripoli.