On September 13, the Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East hosted a small group of leading development experts and human rights practitioners working on Libya for an off-the-record roundtable discussion with US Ambassador to Libya Gene Cretz to discuss how best to help build civil society and democracy in Libya at this pivotal stage in the post-Qaddafi transition.

Hariri Center director Michele Dunne moderated the discussion exploring the economic, legal and human rights dimensions of the reconstruction effort as well as opportunities for electoral assistance and support for political party development.

Ambassador Cretz was nominated in July 2007 by President Bush to become the first US Ambassador to Libya since 1972. Gene Cretz previously served in key diplomatic posts in Israel, Egypt, and Syria. He has also been stationed in Pakistan, India, and China. Prior to assuming his post in Libya, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs.