Libya crowd dan#039;ransack Benghazi election officedan#039;
Protesters demanding greater autonomy for eastern Libya have ransacked the headquarters of Libya's electoral authority in Benghazi, witnesses say.
About 300 people chanting pro-autonomy slogans took ballot boxes out of the building and burnt election papers on the street, a witness told Reuters.
Libya is to elect a new parliament on Saturday, in the first democratic polls since the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi.
Pro-autonomy leaders in eastern Libya have called for a boycott of the vote.
They want eastern Libya to be given a larger share of seats in the new legislature, which is tasked with drawing up a constitution.
"A group of people entered the commission's premises, ransacked the offices and destroyed what they found inside the building," the Benghazi head of the High National Election Commission, Jamal Bukrin, told AFP.
The call to boycott Saturday's vote was made by a group that has proclaimed itself the authority of a semi-autonomous territory for Cyrenaica, or eastern Libya.
One of the movement's leaders, Abdeljawad al-Badin, described the violence as a "reaction to the authorities disregard for their demands".
Cyrenaica contains two-thirds of the Libya's oil reserves.
In March, a rally in Benghazi calling for a semi-autonomous territory of Cyrenaica to be created in eastern Libya turned violent, leaving one person dead.
Libya's interim authorities have struggled to restore stability since Col Gaddafi was removed from power last year in an uprising originating in Benghazi and other eastern cities.
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