The Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) has been authorised by the African Union (AU) to take their place in the AU, during an emergency meeting at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa on 20 October. The meeting was called following the violent death, in the north Libyan coastal town Sirte, of Colonel Muamar Gaddafi who ruled Libya for 42 years.
When fighting broke out against the Gaddafi regime in Libya six months ago, the AU established a panel of five African leaders to negotiate a truce between Gaddafi and the rebels. Controversially, the pan-African organisation had proposed that senior Gaddafi officials be included in the establishment of a new government, a plan rejected by the rebels.
The AU plan was widely criticised for being ineffective and for appearing to favour Gaddafi. The stance it took was likely influenced by the fact that Gaddafi was AU chairman from 2009 until 2010 and, through his support and financial assistance to other African countries he gained many friends across the continent.
Reaction to his death in Africa has been mixed; some countries such as Tanzania and Zimbabwe have condemned his killing, calling it