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“The Islamists think democracy is incompatible with Islam. Those from a national security background think Libya is too fragile to allow for democracy, and the opportunists don’t believe Libya is ready for democracy,” Mr. Gadi said.

The absence of government control over an unknown number of armed militia groups that operate across the country is another key concern for many Libyans. Human rights groups have accused some of these militias of torturing detainees suspected of being loyal to the Gadhafis.

“The militias have been able to act with total impunity and are absolutely reluctant to submit to any kind of central authority or to give up their weapons,” said Donatella Rovera, crisis director at Amnesty International.

“The militias feel quite confident that they are above the law, because, quite frankly, they are above the law,” she said in a phone interview from the Jordanian capital, Amman.

Some militia groups formed an alliance this week.

Rida Ali, a Tripoli-based activist who has participated in protests against the government, described this as a positive development.

“Getting an alliance is better than having to deal with a thousand different armed groups. Now you have a group that you can actually talk to,” he said.

The problem of the militias has been exacerbated by large caches of weapons.

Western officials estimate that the Gadhafi regime acquired a stockpile of about 20,000 shoulder-launched surface-to-air missiles, which are used to bring down aircraft.

The United States has committed $40 million to help Libya recover the weapons.

Nationwide elections are to be held in June, and some cities and towns have started to prepare for voting. In Misrata, residents will elect a new city council Monday.

Mr. Ali, the Tripoli resident, said it was a mistake to start the political process early in the revolution and this has divided Libyans along factional lines.

“During the revolution, the anti-Gadhafi movement was united in toppling the regime. Somewhere along the line, someone blew the whistle to start the political race even while the job was incomplete,” he said.

The high level of frustration with the NTC is evident even in gestures that the council sees as generous. Its decision to give about $1,600 to each family to celebrate the anniversary of the revolution has been criticized by many Libyans as a bribe to buy their loyalties.

On a recent visit to Libya, Amnesty International’s Ms. Rovera was struck by the familiarity of the complaints voiced by a majority of the Libyans she met.

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