President of the Bar Association/ Bâtonnier in Tripol
Mr. Mohamed Salem Darah, a prominent Libyan human rights figure, is a competent lawyer, writer and defender of human rights. He acted as the President of the Bar Association/ Bâtonnier in Tripoli, and he played an important role in establishing many organizations, including Young Arab Lawyers Organization and Justice Human Rights Organization, under the previous regime. He also helped in creating a cultural and human rights outlet when he was the Head of the Center for Legal Studies within the General Bar Association.
Mohamed Salem represented defendants in many public opinion cases such as: the Liberation Case, the Mahishi Coup Attempt case, the Military Academy Organization, the Leninist Marxists, the Students’ Union, and then the Cultural Week case. He is also the author of many constitutional appeals, such as the Appeal for the unconstitutionality of the People’s Court, and the Appeal for the unconstitutionality of a provision in the Law of Economic Crime.
He is also a believer and defender of the Palestinian Cause; in this context, he traveled by land with his family in solidarity to Gaza against the Israeli aggression in 2010. He was also a pioneer activist and participant in the February Revolution. Indeed, he participated in the February 20, 2011 Demonstration demanding the cessation of Security Forces’ attacks and killing of demonstrators in Benghazi, and the release of the President of the Bar Association/ Bâtonnier Abdel Hafeedh Ghouqa.
Muhammad Darah was born in the city of Zlitan in Libya in 1944, where he completed his religious, elementary and preparatory education, before joining the Libyan Army – Air Force. After having served many sessions, he settled in the Air Navigation Base in the Capital, Tripoli. Then he completed his secondary education in Tripoli, and later joined the Faculty of Law at the University of Benghazi while working in Tripoli, to obtain in the early seventies a Degree (Licence) in Law and choose to become a Lawyer. He carried on his Higher Education until he obtained a Master’s Degree in Public Law in 1998. He passed away after a heart attack in his hometown, Zliten, on November 22, 2015.
Words in favor of the Late Mohammed Salem Darah
In his memorial ceremony, Dr. Ahtiosh Faraj Ahtiosh described him as follows:
“He was an adept lawyer with a unique oratory and pleading style. He pleaded in many national and international cases, perhaps the most important of which was the removal of many constitutional appeals and his defense of many political prisoners and prisoners of conscience and drafted several legal submissions.”
Muhammad al-Allagui, the former Minister of Justice, described him as follows:
“The deceased was one of the leaders of the trade union movement under the tyrannical regime. He also provided a cultural space that was an outlet for all militants, intellectuals and leaders of public opinion.”
Salah al-Marghani, Lawyer and former Minister of Justice
Azza Al-Maqhour, Lawyer and Writer