Security Observatory

Guardians of Virtue: between politics and social peace


Recently , The Endowment and Religious Affairs Authority was surprised. Libyan circles, by Resolution No. 436/2023, Adopts a program that includes observation, follow-up and prosecution under the name “Guardians of Virtue”. It provides for the formation of an administrative committee, It is entrusted with a set of tasks that carry with it a legal status. which is intended to preserve and preserve virtue and defend it, According to them.

And noteworthy, The meanings, content and limits of virtue today vary in understanding. In light of the societal disparity within the framework of trends and ideas, The lack of determinants or fixed dimensions makes this decision, use it as he pleases, and whatever corresponds to his ideological or sectarian perception and reference, This is what opposes the behavior of our conservative Libyan society, which is dominated by moderation and moderation.

As a precaution, the Awqaf Authority was striving to confront preserving the prevalence of virtue and its meanings, Estimate for herself the reasons and determinants of the success of her vision in what does not contradict legal behaviour. social harmony and peace, And to distance itself from everything that perpetuates and affirms the attraction between the groups of society and its institutions, Especially since we know that the terms “nodal deviations, Ethical and intellectual” are exchanged between the different segments of society in terms of orientations and starting points.

It became certain for the violators of the authority that issued this decision, They see it as a religious weapon. to narrow down, stone and exclude, with suspicious motives and ends, Transferring imported and new experiences to the Libyan citizen.

reactions to this decision

If we know that the two institutions of the Libyan Scholars Association, Dar Al Iftaa, They have a different opinion, and they are two religious institutions that express a religious authority. It is a school of thought for a wide segment of society , and they are firmly rooted in it. Here we realize the wide gap that such decisions leave in the fabric of Libyan society. Who has always been proud of his moderation , moderation and maintaining his religiosity. They believe that this decision will be a sword wielding all violators in thought and behaviour. He uses it whenever he wants , and however the party that adopted its issuance and works to enable and revive it wants.

We should mention here an example of these considered objections. It is part of the observations of the Libyan Scholars Association and their reaction to this decision. Where she mentioned in a statement issued by her, in which she said, This program contains violations of Sharia. legal, and social that cannot be approved or tolerated on its serious negatives, This includes:

  • What is included in this program, It does not fall within the competences of the authority guaranteed to it by the law of its establishment. It is a usurpation of power. which is one of the most egregious defects of administrative decisions, And because among the most dangerous functions that the Awqaf Authority usurped through this committee are:

1 – The right to follow people, and catch them, and lock them up, and restricting their freedoms until they enter into their sect, They have no hope of release except that. It is known that no institution that does not fall under the Ministries of Justice or the Interior, To have the power to pursue, imprison and restrict freedoms.

2 – Spying on whomever they want , under the umbrella of “Virtue Guard”, They have the right to register. and capture media materials for those who spy on him, Which makes everyone under threat and scandal, Opposites of His saying: And do not spy.

3- Interfering with any program, educational curriculum, or decision that contradicts “virtue.” which they guard, And what it contains of belief, thought and behavior, They see it as the only truth. It is not hidden from the control in this, shed, management of society according to their whim alone, We mention here their opposition to the identity of the country. with all its religious aspects, social, and cultural.

  • The terminology used in the decision is loose, different meanings, They can interpret it however they want. according to their orientation, And their beliefs , and their extremist ideology contrary to the orientation and identity of our society.
  • In this program, the mouths of all opponents and opponents are muzzled. Among them are scholars, and the media, jurists and activists who are guaranteed by the Constitutional Declaration, law freedom of expression, Because they will be accused of violating the “virtue” of which they are the only guardians. They will be threatened with imprisonment. and restrict their freedom until they are satisfied with them, This came in the third point of their fateful decision, However, they expressed it in an equivocal way when they said, “Receiving individuals suspected of being victims… for their rehabilitation.”

The League of Libyan Scholars concluded that this decision was rejected. Specifically, the program It confirmed the following:

” Firstly : Our keenness to spread Islamic morals in its disciplined concept according to the rules of Sharia law. The source of which is the Book and the Sunnah.

secondly : The provisions of Libyan law must be implemented in order to determine what is punishable. and what is not punishable, And its implementation by the competent authorities confined to the police and the judiciary.

Third : No one has the right to be held accountable. check, and judge, She is imprisoned only for what the law gives her the right to do so. They are the ministries of justice and the interior.

Fourthly : We warn all ministries, and destinations, and individuals from participating in the membership of that committee, or agree to pass it on, because of its incitement to sectarianism, racism, and arousing a bitter temptation, utter chaos, And a deep rift in society.

Fifth: We demand the Council of Ministers to assume its responsibilities towards the tampering emanating from the officials of the body affiliated to them administratively and organizationally , who have proven time after time that they are not trusted with the identity of our country with all its components. and usurp the powers of state institutions, And they deny their scholars.”

The response of the Libyan Scholars Association is over


If we see the level of unity of societal rejection of this decision, We are aware of its seriousness and the repercussions that may result from imposing it and passing it to be a reality in the Libyan state. Therefore, if this decision is implemented, it is certain that it will have severe negative repercussions that threaten the national security and societal peace of the country and cause a deep rift in it. to overlap tasks, and powers with the rest of the police agencies, And security subject to the recognized Libyan laws , and issued by the legislative authorities considered.

also for this matter, A negative impact on the level of societal stability due to the emergence of practices, and authoritative tasks, and control that cannot be monitored or subjected to an authority other than the authority of the one who issued it, It warns of dire consequences for the cohesion of society and a warning of its division. Confirming the terrorist extremist concept, “He who is not with me is against me.” This is one of the worst things that human societies go through.

Finally … Passing such a decision would violate the principle of “the accused is released until proven guilty” and that the same party would be the judge and the executioner at the same time. This does not accomplish nor justice, He does not establish a single state with a legislative, executive and judicial reference , before which everyone is tried with justice and the law.


June 1, 2023

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