News / Europe

Britain Gives Diplomatic Recognition to Libyan Rebels

British Foreign Minister William Hague address the media during a news conference at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London, July 27, 2011
British Foreign Minister William Hague address the media during a news conference at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London, July 27, 2011

Britain has granted diplomatic recognition to Libya's opposition ruling council while the group's leadership withdrew an offer for leader Moammar Gadhafi to stay in the country if he ceded power.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague Wednesday said his government has also expelled all of Libya's diplomats and invited the rebel Transitional National Council to replace them. He said the moves are based on the opposition's increasing legitimacy, competency and success in reaching out to Libyans across the country.

Hague said the council is working toward a more open and democratic Libya, which he said is in "stark contrast" to Mr. Gadhafi, whose "brutality" against the Libyan people has stripped him of legitimacy.

The foreign secretary also said Britain will release $149 million in frozen Libyan assets to pay for fuel and basic needs in rebel-held territory.

The Libyan government condemned the moves, calling Britain's expulsion of its diplomats and recognition of the rebel council "illegal and irresponsible."

Earlier Wednesday, the head of the opposition council, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, said the rebel group's offer for Mr. Gadhafi to step down and remain in the country has expired. Jalil said the proposal, which was presented to a U.N. envoy about a month ago, had a deadline attached.

On Tuesday, Libya's Prime Minister Al-Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi said Mr. Gadhafi's departure is not up for discussion. He commented after talks with U.N. special envoy Abdul Elah al-Khatib, who met with the Libyan opposition on Monday in Benghazi.

The United States, France and more than 30 other countries have recognized the council as Libya's interim government.

Britain's announcement came a day after Libyan TV showed the man convicted of the 1988 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, at a pro-Gadhafi rally in Tripoli. Abdel Baset al-Megrahi returned to Libya after Scottish authorities released him from prison in 2009 because of health concerns.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid