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 UN Rejects Emergency Meeting Sought by Libya

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PostSubject: UN Rejects Emergency Meeting Sought by Libya   UN Rejects Emergency Meeting Sought by Libya EmptyWed 23 Mar 2011, 7:42 am

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UN rejects emergency meeting sought by Libya

March 21, 2011


UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Monday rejected a Libyan request for an emergency meeting to halt what it called "military aggression" by France and the United States, but the council will get a briefing on Libya Thursday from the secretary-general.

Council members held closed-door discussions in response to a letter dated Saturday from Libyan Foreign Minister Musa Kousa who claimed that "an external conspiracy was targeting ... (Libya) and its unity and territorial integrity."

According to the letter, obtained by The Associated Press, Kousa accused France and the U.S. of bombing "several civilian sites" in violation of the U.N. Charter and called for "an emergency meeting in order to halt this aggression."

The Security Council late Thursday adopted a resolution authorizing military action to protect civilians from attacks by Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's forces and imposed a no-fly zone over the country. On Saturday, U.S., French and British forces launched airstrikes against Libyan air defenses, tanks, armored personnel carriers and other military hardware.

India's U.N. Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri said the resolution requires Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to report to the Security "within seven days" on the implementation of its provisions, which also include a more robust arms embargo and additional Libyan individuals, companies, banks and other entities subject to travel bans and asset freezes.

"That seven days is on Thursday, so people didn't want to get into a discussion on who represents whom and what the letter is," Puri said. "They want to have a discussion on substance which will be on Thursday."

One of the sticky issues if the council had agreed to an emergency meeting would have been who would speak for Libya. The entire Libyan mission to the United Nations, including the ambassador and deputy ambassador, is supporting the opposition and has called for Gadhafi to step down.


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