Libyan Gambling Information
By Reno Rollins
Gambling is illegal in Libya.
In 1969, a group of army officers led by Muammar al-Gaddafi ousted King Idris of Libya. While the new regime helped to liberate women and launch social reforms, they also brought back many traditional Islamic laws, such as a ban on gambling and alcohol. Those bans are in effect to this day.
Facts About Libya
Located in North Africa, Libya is bordered by Egypt, Sudan, Chad, Niger, Algeria and Tunisia. Ninety percent of the country’s 700,000 square miles is desert, and it is the 17th largest country in the world (roughly the size of Alaska). 5.7 million people live in Libya, and the capital is Tripoli. The three traditional parts of the country are known as Fezzan, Cyrenaica and Tripolitania.
Libya is led by Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi. His policies have brought him into conflict with the West on past occasions, but foreign relations have improved in recent times. He helped organize a bloodless coup in 1969, overthrowing King Idris. Idris’ nephew was placed on the throne, but he was quickly deposed by the military and placed under house arrest. Gaddafi has never taken the title of king, instead adopting the title of “Brother Leader and Guide of the Revolution."
Libya was recently removed from the U.S. State Department’s state sponsored terrorist list. It had been on this list for 27 years. Diplomatic relations have been fully restored with the United States, and Libya was voted to serve on the United Nations Security Council in 2007.
Libya is still criticized for their record on human rights, and they are often accused of poor prison conditions, arbitrary arrests, no fair public trials and restrictions on freedom of religion and the press. Labor rights of foreign workers are restricted, and Libyans do not have the ability to peacefully change their government.
The economy relies heavily on the oil sector. Tourism has also increased in recent years, with 130,000 tourists visiting the country annually. The government hopes to increase this figure to 10 million.
The majority of the population is made up of Arabs and Libyan Berbers. The official language of the country is Arabic, and Islam is the predominant religion.
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