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Foreign Minister Paet: NATO-Led Mission Will Remain in Libya Until Gadhafi Regime Ends Violence Against Citizens

14.04.2011

No. 130-E

At a meeting of the foreign ministers of NATO countries and non-NATO countries that are contributing to the mission in Libya in Berlin today, it was decided that military action would continue until the Gadhafi regime ends the violence against the people of Libya.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that the goal of the international NATO-led mission in Libya is to protect the residents of Libya against the repression of the Gadhafi regime in accordance with the UN resolutions. “The NATO-led mission supported by the Arab League, African Union, European Union, and many other countries will remain in Libya until the attacks of the Gadhafi regime against the people of Libya have ended,” he added.

Paet stated that NATO-led operations have saved tens of thousands of lives. “A regime that uses military force against its own people is not legitimate, as is confirmed by the resolutions of the UN. Those who start wars against their own people must leave,” he said.

Paet said that in addition to military actions, the international community must also focus on helping the refugees and finding further political solutions that would allow Libya to begin carrying out reforms and developing rule of law. “The participation of the Arab countries and other non-NATO nations is essential in the Libya mission. Today’s meeting on Libya was attended by the NATO countries as well as Sweden, Ukraine, Qatar, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, and Morocco,” said Paet.

According to the Estonian foreign minister, avoiding the division of Libya should be a key factor in determining a political solution for Libya’s future. “The close co-operation of the entire international community is needed,” he added.

In implementing UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973, NATO’s role is to co-ordinate a military operation in order to carry out the no-fly zone and arms embargo prescribed by the Security Council resolutions and to protect civilians.

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