Abdel Rahman Chalgam is the former Foreign Minister during the Gaddafi era, and the former Libyan representative at the United Nations Security Council.
At first incredulous to accounts of widespread murder perpetrated by Gaddafi’s loyalists, he later defected from the regime on February 24th, 2011, upon hearing Gaddafi broadcast commands for Libyans to kill protesters. The following day he delivered an emotive speech before the United Nations Security Council, condemning the massacres and crimes committed by the regime at the onset of the uprising. He played an instrumental role in passing UN resolutions 1970 and 1973, which addressed the protection of civilians in Benghazi and other cities in revolt as well as stringent sanctions on the moribund regime of Gaddafi.
Chalgam graduated from Cairo University with a degree in journalism. He speaks English, French and Italian. Between 1975 and 1977, he was the director of “Alfajr Aljadid” (The New Dawn) and then entered politics. He occupied several high-profile positions during Gaddafi’s reign, such as Minister of Media and Libyan Ambassador to Italy.
Chalgam was a fixture at the Bab Alaziziyya compound, and by virtue of his closeness to Gaddafi he was a font of insight into the corruption and scandals that occurred within the compound’s walls. One of his most revealing statements related to the coordination between the Tunisian and Libyan regimes, which, “was so strong that Gaddafi decided to approve a monthly salary for the ex-Tunisian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali.”
After the revolution, Chalgam published a book entitled People around Gaddafi, in which he presents anecdotes and secrets of high-level figures who were in Gaddafi’s inner circle, such as Abdallah Snoussi, Mousa Kousa, and Ahmad Qaddaf Addam.