The flag of Libya consists of three horizontal bands of red, black and green. The black band is wider than the other two bands (equal in the width of the red and green bands combined). The red and green bands are equal in width. In the middle of the black band are a white crescent and a five-pointed star. The length of the flag is twice its breadth. The flag was originally introduced in 1951 when the Kingdom of Libya was introduced but was abandoned in 1969 when the monarchy was overthrown by Colonel Muammar Qaddafi. It was readopted as the national flag on February 17, 2011.

Each of the three horizontal bars of the Libyan flag represents the regions of Libya. The red bar represents the region of Fezzan with the black band, which is the widest, representing the Cyrenaica region. The bottom green bar represents the region of Tripolitania. The crescent and the star are the traditional symbols of Islam, which is the dominant religion in Libya. White is also a color of Islam, symbolizing peace and purity.

The current flag of Libya was designed by Omar Faiek Shannib who was then the Chief of the Royal Diwans and the Vice President of the National Assembly. Omar presented a paper drawing of the proposed flag to the Libyan National Constitution Convention. The design, which comprised of red, black, and green horizontal stripes and white crescent and star, was approved by King Idris Al Senussi and the Assembly.

The region that is presently referred to as Libya has had had several flags under different leadership. The western part of Libya which was referred to as the Tripolitanian Republic had a light blue flag with a green palm tree and a white star on top of the tree. Libya adopted the flag of the Kingdom of Italy in 1934 when it became an Italian colony. Under the British military administration, the region of Libya used the Union flag. Between 1943 and 1951, the southern Military Territory of Fezzan-Ghadames hoisted a red flag with crescent and star. Following the 1969 coup d’etat, Libya adopted the red-white-black African Liberation Flag. The flag formed the basis. Between 1977 and 2011, Libya adopted the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya flag which consisted of a green flag. The green flag was rated the most boring in the world and was the only flag in the world with only a single color and no design.

This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018

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