Posted by: africanpressorganization | 25 March 2011

Focus-Libya / EU – the operations will cease only when the civilian population is safe





Focus-Libya / EU – the operations will cease only when the civilian population is safe



ROME, Italy, March 25, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The European Union stands ready to initiate and adopt further sanctions, including measures to ensure that oil and gas revenues do not reach the Gaddafi regime, to safeguard Libya’s territorial integrity, and to recognise the positive contribution made by the coalition through its military actions to protect the civilian population. The Union also reiterated that the Colonel must go immediately.

These are some of the key points in the conclusions on Libya adopted today (24 March) by the European Council. The leaders of the 27 member states recognised that the meeting held in Paris on 17 March, which gave the go-ahead for military action by the “coalition of the willing”, has made a decisive contribution to the application of UN Resolution 1973. “The military operations should cease as soon as the civilian population is safe”, say the conclusions. The EU underscores the crucial role played by the Arab countries, most notably the Arab League, in implementing Resolution 1973 and seeking a political solution to the crisis.

With its regional partners, Europe will step up the efforts to meet the Libyan people’s legitimate demand for democracy and open a dialogue with all parties concerned. The need to safeguard Libya’s sovereignty and territorial integrity must also be taken into due consideration. The 27 are also ready to adopt further sanctions to ensure that oil and gas revenues do not reach the Gaddafi regime. Member states will take proposals to this effect to the UN Security Council.

The EU also undertook to step up humanitarian assistance, using naval vessels where appropriate, to address a situation which, especially near Libya’s borders, is giving grounds for serious concern.

Italy welcomed the decision to transfer the command of operations to enforce the no-fly zone over Libya to NATO. “That was exactly what Italy wanted. Even if it remains a preliminary political agreement, in our view it’s definitely a positive one”, was the comment from the Italian Foreign Ministry (MFA). “It establishes a single chain of command that avoids duplication”. In a letter addressed to Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, the Head of State, Giorgio Napolitano, expressed his appreciation of the work being done by the MFA and its diplomatic corps in the face of the “dramatic political events that have swept various countries of North Africa and the Middle East, as well as the appalling tragedy of the earthquake in Japan”.

The African Union (AU) has invited representatives of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime and the Libyan opposition to take part today (25 March) in a meeting at Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia, to discuss the conflict. Also taking part will be representatives of the Arab states, the European Union and the United Nations.



Italy – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


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