News / Africa

UN Security Council Reviewing Libya No Fly Zone Proposal

Margaret Besheer

As forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi ramped up their offensive against opposition strongholds Tuesday, diplomats from Lebanon, France and Britain presented the U.N. Security Council with a resolution that includes authorization of a No-Fly Zone over Libya.

On Saturday the Arab League called on U.N.’s most powerful body to authorize a No-Fly Zone over Libya to protect civilians caught in the weeks-old battle between government and rebel forces. On Tuesday, that request was formally taken up in the Security Council, as a draft resolution was circulated among the 15 members.

Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant said after the closed-door session that there was a good response from other council members to the draft text. He said they expressed urgency about the deteriorating situation on the ground and the need for the Security Council to take rapid action.

But there has also been division within the Council on a No-Fly Zone and the British ambassador acknowledged that some members still have questions. "A lot of questions were asked, particularly about the implementation of a No-Fly Zone - who would be participating and how it would work and questions like that, perfectly reasonably questions. And obviously we will be going through all that in more detail tomorrow," he said.

The draft includes a ban on all flights in Libyan airspace in order to help protect civilians, but it does make exceptions to allow humanitarian aid flights.

Additionally, it calls for strict implementation of the arms embargo adopted in Resolution 1970 two weeks ago, as well as measures to prevent foreign mercenaries from entering Libya. The resolution also seeks to expand the list of individuals and entities subject to an asset freeze and travel ban imposed in resolution 1970.

Lebanese Ambassador Nawaf Salam said his delegation worked with their counterparts at Libya’s U.N. mission to prepare the part of the resolution dealing with the No-Fly Zone, and had asked them to identify specific towns and regions that would need safe passage and protection. The diplomats at Libya’s U.N. mission have defected over the past few weeks from the Gadhafi camp.

France’s Ambassador Gerard Araud said his government’s goal remains the speedy authorization of a No-Fly Zone. While Germany’s Ambassador, Peter Wittig, said he raised questions he felt were not fully answered, including whether Arabs would participate in such a mission.

Asked whether authorization of No-Fly Zone at this point would be too late to be effective for opposition forces, Lebanon’s ambassador said "nothing is too late, but it may not be enough."

The council will reconvene Wednesday morning to begin negotiations of the text, after having the evening to go back to their capitals for instructions.

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life 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.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs