News / Africa

US Says Gadhafi Has 'Forfeited' Right to Lead Libya

A wounded Libyan is taken into a hospital in the eastern oil port of Brega, Libya, after opponents of Moammar Gadhafi repelled an attack by the Libyan leader's forces trying to retake the coastal oil installation in a topsy-turvy battle in which a warplan
A wounded Libyan is taken into a hospital in the eastern oil port of Brega, Libya, after opponents of Moammar Gadhafi repelled an attack by the Libyan leader's forces trying to retake the coastal oil installation in a topsy-turvy battle in which a warplan

The State Department said Friday Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi has “forfeited the right” to run the country by turning his armed forces against political opponents. The United States has begun an airlift of relief supplies to third-country nationals fleeing Libya to Tunisia and Egypt.

In further tough rhetoric on the Libyan crisis, the State Department says the only appropriate subject for dialogue between the Gadhafi government and its opponents should be the terms for Mr. Gadhafi’s “departure from the scene.”

State Department Spokesman P.J. Crowley said the fact the Tripoli government has turned “lethal, overwhelming force against its population” is of grave concern to the United States and that U.S. officials believe it has “delegitimized” Mr. Gadhafi “as a leader for Libya.”

“There are rights and there are responsibilities," said P.J. Crowley. "Gadhafi has been a brutal dictator for four decades. And based on what he has done in turning his weapons against his people, rather than engaging them, we believe that he has forfeited his right to lead Libya.”

Crowley said U.S. officials continue to monitor the situation and rule out no options including participation in an international “no-fly zone” regime over Libya, as some in Libya’s armed opposition have called for.

The spokesman noted reservations about the costs and implications of a no-fly zone raised by Defense Secretary Robert Gates and others, but said it could well develop into an option the United States would have to “seriously consider as things go forward.”

Earlier Friday at a press event with Costa Rican Foreign Minister Rene Castro, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the immediate U.S. focus is on the welfare of Libyans and the thousands of third-country nationals - guest workers and others - who are fleeing the violence.

“There is a lot of confusion on the ground that is often difficult for us to sort through, to get to what the actual facts are," said Clinton. "But the United States remains deeply concerned about the welfare of the Libyan people. Both the Libyans and those who are fleeing Libya are the subject of our outreach, and where ever possible we will be directly providing assistance.”

Clinton said the United States is chartering airliners to transport people stranded near Libya’s eastern and western borders back to their home countries, and that two U.S. Air Force C-130 transport planes had flown to Tunisia, laden with relief supplies.

Spokesman Crowley said the two planes would be pressed into service Saturday carrying Egyptian nationals from Tunisia back to their home country.

U.S. officials estimate that as many as 1.5 million third-country nationals were working in Libya when the violence broke out. They said about 200,000 had fled the country - with about half of them still waiting for assistance in border areas.

Crowley said the flow of those arriving in Egypt and Tunisia has slowed in recent days, perhaps because pro-Gadhafi forces are impeding their departure.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years 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.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs