Libya:
What Happened and When ?


October 3, 1911: Italian troops invaded Libya and landed at Tripoli, facing resistance from Libyans and Turkish troops.
April 9, 1940: From his exile in Egypt, the Amir Idris forms the Libyan Arab Force to fight alongside the British forces fighting against the Axis forces in North Africa.
January 22, 1941: Allied forces captured Tobruk, North East Libya. Libyan Arab Force which was formed by then Amir Idris fought alongside the Allied forces.
February 6, 1941: British and Australian forces (the Allied forces) occupied Benghazi, the second largest Libyan city.
January 26, 1943: Libya was cleared of Axis troops. The Allied forces started their control of Libya.
November 21, 1949: The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution to grant Libya independance no later than 1 January 1952.
October 7, 1951: The Libyan constitution was adapted. It was written by members of the Twenty One Committee which was a representative of all regions of Libya then. The constitution was based on the federal idea of government and it divided Libya into three states: Tripoli, Cyrinica and Fazzan all ruled by a central government lead by king Idris.
December 24, 1951: Libya's independance day. The United Nations in a close vote (Haiti's representitative vote was the only difference) announced that Libya is an independant state. The people finally got what they fought for and they celebrated all over Libya.
March 28, 1952: Libya (then the Kingdom of Libya) joins the Arab League.
July 29, 1953: A Treaty of friendship between Libya and the United Kingdom is signed.
April , 1959: Zletin oil field, one of the largest oil fields in Libya was discovered by Esso-Libya.
January 13, 1963: Libyan students demonstrations in and out of some of Libya's schools and universities. One of the reasons for the demonstrations was that king Idris's government did not participate properly in the Arab Summit which was organized by the Arab League in Cairo, Egypt in 1963. The police killed some of the demonstrators.
January 14, 1963: Libyan students demonstrated again and more were killed by the police.
October 7, 1963: The Libyan constitution was updated to declare that Libya is one nation and no more three states and the name was changed from The United Kingdom of Libya to The Kingdom of Libya. Major government newspapapers changed their names. Tarablus Algharb Newspaper became Alalam, Barka Aljadeeda Newspaper became Alumma and Fazzan Newspaper became Albilad.
January 14, 1964: The first anniversary of 1963's students demontrations. The Libyan students in schools and universities marked the occasion by demonstrating in the streets and the police intervened and some students got shot.
May , 1967: Clashes between Libyan students and government troops .
June 6, 1967: Demonstrations in major cities in Libya following the beginning of the Arab Israeli war of June 5, 1967. Many of the demonstrators asked the government to let them go to the front and fight .The Egyptian leader Jamal Abdulnasir accused king Idris's government of allowing American and British bases in Libya to be used against Egypt.
September 1, 1969: Moammar Al-Gadhafi and a group of army officers overthrew king Idris's government and changed Libya's official name from The Kingdom of Libya to The Libyan Arab Republic which to be governed by The Revolutionary Command Council lead by Moammar Al-Gadhafi. A temporary constitution was declared to replace the Kingdom's constitution which was adopted December 25, 1951 and updated October 7, 1963. The change happened in a peaceful way. The day is celebrated every year as The Revolution Anniversary. The Libyan Revolution was supported by most of the Libyan people and huge demonstrations were held next day and continued for days.
September 8, 1969: Mahmoud Solaiman Al-Magherbi is asked to form a government.
September 13, 1969: Moammar Al-Gadhafi was appointed President of the Revolutionary Command Counsil.
September 29, 1969: Libya announces that the agreements covering British and American bases in Libya (signed by king Idris's government in 1953 and 1955 respectively) will not be renewed.
November 14, 1969: Libya takes over 51% of the capital of foreign banks.
December 7, 1969: A group of senior officers are arrested. It is officially announced that a plot against the Libyan regime has been foiled.
December 8, 1969: The Libyan British negotiations on the evacuation of British bases in Libya begin.
December 11, 1969: A provisional Constitution to remain in force until a permanent constitution should be adapted is proclaimed by the Revolutionary Command Council.
December 23, 1969: Agreements are signed providing for the evacuation of Libya by British troops not later than 31 March 1970 and by American troops not later than 30 June 1970.
January 29, 1970: Negotiations with the oil companies begin in Tripoli for the raising of prices. Libya asks for an increase of 40 cents a barrel. The oil companies agree to only 10 to 13 cents; Gadhafi threatns to break off negotiations, declaring: "My country has done without oil for five thousand years and can do without it for a few years more."
March 3, 1970: In a speech in Al-Baida Gadhafi declares: "As soon as the problem of foreign bases has been settled we will join the battle against the oil companies."
March 5, 1970: The Libyan Government dissolves the Libyan Petroleum Company (LIPETCO) founded in April 1968 and replaces it with the Libyan National Oil Corporation (LINOCO.)
March 31, 1970: After lenghthy negotiations between Libya's representitives and the British represetatives, the british government agreed to leave Tobruk "Al-Adam" base which was established following World War II. The base was named Jamal Abdulnasir Base and that day is celebrated every year under the name Eid Al Jala. The British forces in Tobruk base were there mainly to insure UK's interests in the region and to insure king Idris's government stability.
June 11, 1970: After lenghthy negotiations between Libya's representitives and the American represetatives, the American government agreed to leave "Almallaha" base near Tripoli which was established following World War II. The day is celebrated every year under the name Eid Al Jala. The American forces in Almallaha and Alwatia bases were there mainly to insure US's interests in the region and to insure king Idris's government stability.
July 7, 1970: The Libyan Government natiolises the networks for distributing oil products owned by foreign oil companies. Henceforward only the Libyan National Oil Company will have the right to distribute these products througout the country.
July 21, 1970: The Libyan Revolutionary Command Counsil decrees the expropriation by the state of all Italian property.
October 7, 1970: After lenghthy negotiations between Libya's representitives and the Italian represetatives, the Italian government agreed to take back thousands of italian settlers who have settled in Libya since the Italian invasion of Libya in October 7, 1911. The day is celebrated every year under the name Jalau'tolian. The Italians who stayed in Libya after the Italians defeat in World War II were having the best land and enjoyed many previlages according to an agreement between the Italian government and king Idris's government. The land were returned to people's ownership. The Italians invaded Libya in October 1911 and they said that Libya was theirs and it was the fourth shore of Italy. The Libyan people fought fiercely against the Italian occupation and lost thousands of men and women who were killed defending their homeland. In september 16, 1931 The Italians hanged Omar Muktar who was eighty years old.
January 3, 1971: Major Abdussalam Jalloud informs the oil companies of Libya's new demands. They aim at a substantial rise in posted prices and a freight charge to be called "Suez Charge", taking effect from the date of the closure of the Suez Canal.
July 30, 1971: The Arab Summit conference meets at Tripoli.
August 13, 1971: A ministerial reshuffle in the Libyan government brings to power a team of civilian technicians to replace the military in several government departments.
March 28, 1972: The first National Congress of Al-Ittihad Al-Ishtiraki Al-Arabi (the Arab Socialist Union) opens at Tripoli.
May 30, 1972: A government decree prescribes the death penalty for belonging to any political party other than the Arab Socialist Union..
June 5, 1972: Libya asks the Soviet Union, the United States and the United Kingdom to reduce the strength of their diplomatic missions in Tripoli.
June 11, 1972: On the second anniversary of the American evacuation of the base of Wheelus, Gadhafi delivers a vigorous speech against Britain and the United States. The ambassadors of the two countries leave the official platform.
July 10, 1972: Major Abdussalam Jalloud was asked to form a new government.
February 21, 1973: A Libyan civilian airplane was shot down by Israeli Air Force fighters over Sinai. 106 Libyans died in that terrorist attack
March 12, 1973: Libya nationalized 51% of each of the foreign oil companies doing business in Libya.
April 16, 1973: In a large gathering in the city of Zuara, Gadhafi launched the "popular cultural revolution" which must lead the people to take over themselves. Gadhafi announecd that the political parties are preventing the revolution from advancing and he would not tolerate political parties and their members any more. He announced that joining a political party is a crime and those who violate that decree would be punished severely. Number of students, professors and government employees were arrested and jailed. Some of the arrested figures were shown on TV talking about their activities in the past.
Gadhafi announced that Libya should be governed by the people, who must organize People's Committees , and take over government and universities offices. There were rumers at that time that Gadhafi won the battle against his army officers, some of whom were in favor of returning to a traditional government in Libya.
May 30, 1973: A United States aircraft entered the Libyan air space during maneauvers conducted by the American 6th fleet in the Mediterranean.
July 11, 1973: Gadhafi resigns. The Revolutionary Command Counsil refuses to accept Gadhafi's resignation.
July 18, 1973: Starting from Ras Jdair, near the Tunisian border, thousands of Libyans begin their "Arab Unity March" towards Cairo, Egypt.
August 4, 1973: Libyan students studying abroad hold a national convention in Tripoli.
March 9, 1974: Libya nationalized American oil companies and announced an oil embargo.
April 8, 1974: At his request, President Gadhafi relinquishes his political and administrative functions, but remains Head of State and Commandor in Chief of the Armed Forces. Majur Abdussalam Jalloud assumes formal responsibilities.
November 14, 1974: The Revolutionary Command Counsil announces a limited reorganization of the government. Abdelmonem Alhouni becomes Minister of Foreign Affairs and Omar Almhaishi becomes the Minister of Planning and Sceintific Research.
February 28, 1975: Libyan students held meetings and demonstrations to oppose the government's continuous intervention in thier affairs. Government's troops entered the universities ( University of Tripoli and Universiy of Benghazi which to be named later University of Alfatih and University of Garyounis respectively) and arrested some students and jailed them without trial.
August 8, 1975: Omar Almhaishi who was a member of the Revolutionary Command Council announced his opposition to Gadhafi and started a radio programme in the Egyptian government-run radio in which he opposes the Libyan system of government and asking the people to revolt and overthrow Gadhafi's government.
January 6, 1976: Libyan students formed an independant union refusing to recognize a student union that was sponsered by the government . Government troops attacked students in their schools and arrested number of students. students demonstrated in the streets asking for an end to the troops intervention in their schools and some students were killed by troops bullets.
April 6, 1976: In a large gathering in the city of Solouq near Benghazi, Gadhafi dennounced the independant students movement and announced that the independant students union is not going to be tolerated any more. He said that the only recognized union is the one lead by Abdulqadir Albaghdadi (who was a student in the faculty of education in University of Tripoli and known for his complete support for Gadhafi.) Gadhafi asked the people in Solouq to liberate schools and universities and get rid them of any students who oppose the great Al-Fatih revolution.
April 7, 1976: Students in University of Tripoli and University of Benghazi (divided into two camps: one supports the government student union and another supports the independant student union) started fighting each other, first using words then throwing stones at each other. The independant union supporters succeeded in defeating their opponents but government troops came to the rescue and arrested many students and jailed them in Alawsat Police Station in Tripoli (and later in Alfurnaj Prison near Tripoli) and in Benghazi's Secret Service Building (and later in Alquaifya Prison near Benghazi.)
Hundreds of students were tried in front of civil courts and were given light sentences. Most of the students were released after 5 weeks and the rest were released after 10 months .
March 2, 1977: The Libyan leader Moammar Al-Gadhafi announcd that Libya is no longer a republic but Jamahiriya (which means the state of masses in which people rule with no need for a traditional government ). Libya's official name changed from The Libyan Arab Republic to The Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahirya. A new constitution replaced the temporary constitution which was adapted in December 1969 three months after Gadhafi's overthrow of king Idris's government in September 1,1969.
April 7, 1977: The first anniversary of April 7, 1976's students uprising. Student leaders were rearrested and retried and two of them (Omar Dabboob and Ben Saud) were hanged in public and the others were sentenced to long terms in prison.
April 10, 1980: The United States expelled 4 members of the Libyan People's Beureau in Washington D.C.
August 19, 1981: The Libyan Gulf of Sidra was attacked. Eight American fighters attacked two Libyan Air Force reconnaissance planes and shot them down.
May 25, 1983: King Mohammad "Idris" Assanousi died in Egypt . He ruled Libya from 24 December 1951 (Libya's Independance Day) till 1 September 1969 (Libya's Revolution Day.) King Idris was 94 years old when he died.
May 8, 1984: Some members of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya (which was established abroad in October 7, 1981 and lead by Dr. Mohammed Almgariaf) enterd Libya in an attempt to overthrow Gadhafi's rejeme. Some of those who participated in that attempt were killed while fighting government troops in Bab Alazizya where Gadhafi's headquarters are. Government reports admitted that there were a fight between the NFSL fighters and government troops but suggested that the fight happened outside Qaddafi's barrackes. Many NFSL members were arrested, tried on TV and hanged in public.
The following is a list of some of those who killed fighting government troops in Tripoli:
Ahmed Hwas - Abdulnasir Aldehra - Majdi Alshwaihdi - Khalid Moammar - Yahya Moammar - Mohamed Alroaith - Salim Alghalali.
November 17, 1984: Been informed that there was a Libyan plot to assasinate former Libyan prime minister Abdulhameed Al Bakkoush, who was living in Egypt at the time, some Egyptian secret sevice agents posed as assassins and when the offer was made; four intermediaries were arrested and sent to prison.
May , 1985: The United States expelled all the emploees of the Libyan People's Bureau in Washington D.C
June 6, 1985: American newspapers reported that the United States State Department had taken extraordinary actions to have Egypt participate in a military invason of Libya and occupy the Eastern part of the country.
February 1, 1986: The deadline by which all Americans citizens are required to end any cooperation with Libya and leave the country. The deadline was set by President Ronald Regan's administration which one month later ordered its navy to attack Libya.
March 24, 1986: The United States carried out a military air and sea attack on the Gulf of Sirte and other targets. Three air planes participated in the attack.
March 25, 1986: The United States Navy planes in the Mediterranean bombarded some civilian targets in the Gulf of Sirte and a Libyan Coast Guard boat killing some civilians and injuring scores of Libyans.
March 31, 1986: The major government-run newspaper in Egypt "Al-Ahram" reported that the United States proposed to Egypt three times that year that Egypt and the US should conduct a joint military attack against Libya.
April 15, 1986: The United States launched a major air raids against Libya presumably in response to the bombing of a discotheque in Berlin on April 5th. A total of 37 people, mostly civilians, died in this raid. To date, no evidence has been presented to support the involvement of Libya in the discotheque bombing.
December 22, 1987: To fight Libyan existence in the African nation of Chad, the first American arm shipment arrived in the Chadian capital Njamina.
June 12, 1988: Gadhafi announced the green charter of human rights and he released hundreds of political prisoners. The charter was announced at the end of a rights convention in the city of Al-Baida. Gadhafi, driving a bouldozer, destroyed some of the political prisons in the Libyan capital Tripoli.
April 6, 1990: British investigators announced that they found an electronic chip that links two Libyans to the explosion of the Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland in December 21, 1988. Libya denied its involvement in the Pan Am flight accedent.
December 7, 1990: A United States air craft left Chad carrying hundreds of Libyans to Nigeria. The Libyans were captured by Chad in its war with Libya. The Libyans were then taken to Zaire, then to the United States. Libya accused the CIA of recruiting some of the Libyan hostages and taking advantage of their situation. Some of the hostages became members of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya and joined its army then some of them had their own opposition group.
April 15, 1992: Accusing two Libyans of masterminding the explosion of the Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland in 21 December 1988, the United Nations imposed sanctions on Libya. Libya offered to let the two accused Libyans to go to a neutral country where they could be tried but the United States and Britain refused, requiring that the two Libyans be tried in Scotland or the United States.
December 22, 1992: A Libyan civilian air plane exploded over Tripoli. 158 people died in the crash. Libya accused Western intilligence agencies of masterminding the explosion . The explosion happened days before the 4th anniversary of the Pan Am flight explosion over Lockerbie, Scotland.
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