Ø 2000 BC: The Lebu tribe settles in Cyrenaica west of Egypt.
Ø 800 BC: Tripolitania, that is, the land of the three cities, is founded by the Phoenicians on the Libyan coast. The three cities were Oea (Tripoli), Sabratha, and Leptis Magna (Labdah). The Phoenicians were the first to realise the strategic importance of this region as a link between Egypt and the Near East and the Mediterranean and Tropical Africa. They exported Africa's gold, precious stones, ivory and ebony wood via the three commercial cities.
Ø 201 BC: Libya becomes part of the Numidic Empire.
Ø 146 BC: Libya is incorporated into the Roman province, Africa. Under Diocletian (284-305) Libya is divided into Libya inferior or Marmarica and Libya superior or Cyrenaica. The latter is the most developed part.
Ø 643 BC: The Arabs conquer Libya and attempt to convert the Berbers to Islam and the Arab way of life. The Berbers accept the faith, but oppose the way of life. Bloody wars ensue.
Ø 12th-16th centuries: Libya is harassed by Spanish invasions.
Ø 1487-1488: The sea route around the Cape, linking Europe and India, is discovered and the caravan routes passing through Libya fall into disuse.
Ø 1492-: America is discovered and the trade routes no longer cross the Mediterranean, but move to the Atlantic Ocean.
Ø 1551: The Turks conquer Libya. During the Ottoman rule Libya is completely cut off from Europe and European influence.
Ø 1911: In September of this year, after a dispute lasting several years, Italy declares war on the Turks. After a brief skirmish, the Italians land in Tripoli and conquer Libya.
Ø 1922: Fascism emerges and Italy makes real attempts to unite the three provinces of Tripolitania, Cyrenaica and Fezzan into one Italian colony. The Libyans resist with undermining activities, especially under Sayyid Mohammed al-Idris, the emir of Cyrenaica, who operates the resistance movement from Egypt.
Ø 1939-1945: World War II breaks out and Idris returns from Egypt, forms a Libyan army and throws his weight behind the Allies. At the beginning of the war the British forces drive the Italians from Libya, but with the arrival of German Field Marshall Rommel this conquered area is taken back. Decisive battles are fought at Tobruk, Derna and Benghazi, in which many South African soldiers loose their lives or are become prisoners-of-war. The defeat at al-Alamein drives the Germans out of North Africa.
Ø 1943: A British military government is appointed for Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, and a French military government is installed in Fezzan.
Ø 1951: On 24 December of this year the three provinces are handed over to the Libyan federal government and Libya becomes an independent kingdom with King Idris I as head of state.
Ø 1963: The federal government is dissolved and the three provinces mentioned are divided into ten administrative provinces. Although there is a parliament consisting of a house of representatives and a senate, King Idris is an autocrat.
Ø 1969: On 1 September of this year young army officers execute a coup d'etat while the 80-year-old king is in Turkey for medical treatment. They proclaim a republic with the motto: freedom, socialism and unity.
Ø 1969: There is no general revolt against the shift of power, although a number of officers attempt a counter-coup, which fails, in December of this year. Ghaddafi comes to the fore as the real head of state and governs with his Revolutionary Command Council (RCC), which aims at loosening the national economy from foreign influences and liquidating all foreign bases in the country. The new government follows a policy of non-alignment in respect of foreign relations and it soon becomes clear that it intends closer cooperation with the other Arab countries. The RCC provides monetary assistance to Egypt and Jordan and agrees to provide arms to Algeria and the Palestinian rebels. The possibility of a political agreement between Libya, Egypt and Sudan is mentioned.
Ø 1969: In December Great Britain and America evacuate their bases at Al Adem, Tobruk and Wheelus. By 31 December the British forces leave Libya.
Ø 1970: By June 1970 the Americans also leave Libya. The new government cancels a contract to the value of R240 million concluded by the previous government with Great Britain for the delivery of ground-to-air projectiles, supersonic jets and other military equipment, and secret discussions with France lead to an agreement for the delivery of Mirage bombers.
Ø 1971: After consultations, Libya, Egypt and Syria form an Arab federation.
Ø 1972: In August of this year Libya announces that it plans to amalgamate with Egypt depending on the outcome of a referendum in September 1972.
Ø 1972: Israeli athletes are murdered at the Olympic Games in Munich by members of Black September and Libya is linked to the terrorist group.
Ø 1973: Ghaddafi's amalgamation ideals face problems. He hardly takes part in the Middle East war in October. Relations with President Sadat of Egypt deteriorate after Egypt successfully recruits friends among Arab oil magnates.
Ø 1974: Early in January Libya and Tunisia announce that they have decided to merge and that a plebiscite on this question would be held on 18 January. However, it is postponed indefinitely. Ghaddafi's fallout is partly due to the latter's "half-heartedness" over the Islam-inspired cultural revolution launched by Ghaddafi in Libya and which he would also like to see in Egypt. As a fanatical follower of Islam, he forcefully promotes the arabisation of Libya.
Ø 1979: The USA declares that Libya is supporting terrorism, prohibits oil imports from this country and freezes its American assets.
Ø 1980's: Oil prices fall and an economy drive leads to dissatisfaction among the Libyan population.
Ø 1984: In May of this year a coup fails and leads to a campaign of terror against civilians suspected of high treason.
Ø 1986: Libya is regarded as an accomplice in the explosion in a Berlin nightclub. In April the USA bombards targets near Tripoli and Benghazi.
Ø 1993: Members of the army and of the Warfallah tribe are arrested because of an alleged coup conspiracy.
Ø The Pan Am air catastrophe takes place and the UN demands that Libya extradites the suspects so that they can stand trial. Libya refuses and limited UN sanctions are introduced.
Ø The African Union replaces the Organisation for African Unity and Ghaddafi attempts to expand his influence in this organisation, the brainchild of South Africa's Thabo Mbeki, among others.
Note: There is no country in Africa or the Mid East w/exc of israel and Jordan with higher literacy rates.
Economy Statistics > Population below poverty line (most recent) by country (source: http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/eco_pop_bel_pov_lin-economy-population-below-poverty-line)
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