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Obama: Libyan Election 'Another Milestone'


A woman shows her ink-stained finger after casting her vote during the National Assembly election in Benghazi.

A woman shows her ink-stained finger after casting her vote during the National Assembly election in Benghazi.

U.S. President Barack Obama has congratulated Libya for its first free vote in decades, calling it "another milestone" in the country's transition to democracy.

Turnout for the July 7 poll to elect the 200-seat parliament was 60 percent, according to the Election Commission.

As they did in Egypt and Tunisia, Islamists also hope to rise to power in Libya where they were long repressed under the secular rule of Muammar Qaddafi.

Violence marred voting in the restive east of the country, where one person was reported killed and two wounded.

Some easterners boycotted the election and protesters torched ballot boxes in 14 out of 19 polling centers in the eastern city of Ajdabiya.

The last parliamentary elections in Libya were in 1964, five years before Qaddafi's military coup.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters
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