Libya's prime minister has failed, says Muslim Brotherhood leader
Libyan prime minister Ali Zidan gives a press conference after his brief abduction this week. Photograph: Ismail Zitouny/Reuters
The leader of Libya's Muslim Brotherhood has said the prime minister, who was briefly abducted by militia members this week, has failed and needs to be replaced.
Mohammed Sawan said on Saturday the Libyan parliament is "seriously searching for an alternative" to Ali Zidan, who was seized from his hotel room on Thursday.
Zidan has described the kidnapping as an attempted coup and warned that some of Libya's many armed militias want to turn the country into "another Afghanistan or Somalia".
"One hundred vehicles came with heavy and medium weapons," he said in a speech. "This is a coup against legitimacy."
Sawan said in reference to the kidnapping that mismanagement by Zidan's government might have led to "irresponsible actions" by individuals.
The abduction ended when local militias stormed the Tripoli police station where the prime minister was being held on Thursday afternoon.
Zidan has been facing mounting pressure from parliament for months, first by Islamist blocs including the Muslim Brotherhood and another group of ultra-conservative Salafis. Independents later joined the criticism of Zidan over allegations of corruption and wasting public funds, as well as the country's deteriorating security.
He has not named those who were behind his kidnapping, only referring to the Libyan Revolutionaries Operation Room, a militia umbrella group.
As well as abducting Zidan, militias have besieged key ministries in the capital, Tripoli, and stormed ministers' offices this summer to force the parliament to pass a divisive law aimed at purging officials who served under Muammar Gaddafi from the new government. The parliament passed the law virtually at gunpoint, highlighting the challenges facing Libya as it tries to transition to democracy.
Last year the Muslim Brotherhood came second in the country's first parliamentary elections, which were won by a non-Islamist bloc led by the wartime prime minister, Mahmoud Jibril. It has five ministers in Zidan's government.
A day before Zidan's abduction, parliament agreed to form a committee to either discuss an alternative to Zeidan or summon him for questioning.
"The government represented by the prime minister has had no success," Sawan said.