Calls grow for allies to stop air strikes on Libya

Moscow condemns the international coalition air strikes in Libya, and so does the Arab League and the African Union. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is in North Africa to discuss the ongoing conflict.

At least 60 people have already been killed as a result of the coalition air strikes, and as the strikes continue, that number is expected to rise.

Russia and many of its allies around the world find it unacceptable, saying that the UN Resolution 1973 spoke only of establishing a no-fly zone that was supposed to guarantee civilian security.

“It is unacceptable to use the mandate subsequent upon UN Resolution 1973, the adoption of which was quite an ambiguous move, to achieve the goals which clearly are beyond its scope as the resolution stipulates only measures to protect civilian population,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Sergey Lavrov is planning to visit Algeria while in North Africa. He is currently in Egypt, where he is expected to meet a number of officials to discuss the situation in Libya.

He will also meet with the Secretary General of the Arab League Amr Moussa.

The Arab League initially supported the establishment of the no-fly zone over Libya but have since changed their position, seeing the number of civilian casualties.

“What is happening in Libya differs from the aim of imposing a no-fly zone, and what we want is the protection of civilians and not the bombardment of more civilians,” Moussa said.

Many believe that the current intervention will not only destabilize Libya and aggravate the conflict even further, but this destabilization may even spread to the entire North African region.

The African Union’s panel on Libya has called for an “immediate stop” to all attacks on Libya and said that “political reforms to eliminate the causes of the present crisis” must be carried out there.

The panel consists of leaders of South Africa, Uganda, Mauritania, Congo and Mali who are expected to travel to Libya shortly to help end the violence.

Turkey, a very important Arab ally within the European Union and NATO community, is also getting increasingly concerned about what is happening.

EU foreign ministers are meeting in Brussels on Monday to discuss the events in Libya. As for NATO, it is day three of the alliance’s “two-day” meeting and ambassadors have so far failed to agree on whether to get involved.

Protests against the coalition air strikes in Libya took place in some US cities, including New York, Chicago and San Francisco.

An anti-war demonstration has also been held in Brussels and more are expected.

Leave a comment