Posted by: africanpressorganization | 20 May 2011

FOCUS LIBYA: Napolitano, NATO has averted massacres




FOCUS LIBYA: Napolitano, NATO has averted massacres



ROME, Italy, May 20, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — NATO “has succeeded in preventing harsh repression and civilian massacres” in Libya. This was President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano’s statement speaking at the 60th anniversary of the NATO Defence College in Rome. Napolitano thanked NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen for the “difficult, complex and delicate task” the Alliance was carrying out in Libya, “due to the situation on the ground and the limitations imposed by resolution 1973 with which Nato must comply”. “Nevertheless”, he explained, “it has managed to prevent harsh repression and civilian massacres. I am confident”, he concluded, “that, with patience and tenacity, international law will prevail in Libya”.


The President then pointed out that Italy “is proud to participate fully in the NATO operations in Libya”. Rasmussen thanked Italy for its contribution to the operations “from the start and even more so fully aware of the historical dimension”.


“Recent events are forcing NATO to look southward, from which the new challenges to everyone’s security are increasingly coming”, President Napolitano said, underscoring that “no one had foreseen the recent events in the Mediterranean and the profound changes within the Arab world. We are witnessing a turning point in a region that is our immediate neighbor, right at our borders, and without a doubt I say that in reference to NATO and to the European Union together”.


Minister Franco Frattini reiterated the same concept, saying that “the wind blowing from North Africa to the Middle East deserves our convinced support”. Frattini underscored how meeting to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the NATO Defence College, which has formed generations of Alliance officers, was “an ideal way” to reassert Italy’s commitment to the founding values of NATO: freedom, democracy and solidarity.


“In North Africa”, asserted Defence minister Ignazio La Russa, “the winds of democracy are blowing, the people are feeling a strong need for change and it is up to NATO to encourage the spread of that wind and of stability”. As for the situation in Libya, the Minister specified that “the Libyan people’s security is an objective that has thus far not been achieved”.



Italy – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


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