Qaddafi makes appeal to the U.N. Security Council
As the Western-led air campaign entered its third day, Muammar al-Qaddafi struggled to mount a diplomatic campaign to halt the allied assault. On Saturday, Qaddafi’s foreign minister, Musa Kousa, appealed to the U.N. Security Council to convene an emergency session to "halt this aggression, which is not aimed at protecting civilians, as is purported, but ...
As the Western-led air campaign entered its third day, Muammar al-Qaddafi struggled to mount a diplomatic campaign to halt the allied assault.
On Saturday, Qaddafi’s foreign minister, Musa Kousa, appealed to the U.N. Security Council to convene an emergency session to "halt this aggression, which is not aimed at protecting civilians, as is purported, but rather to strike civilians sites, economic facilities and sites[s] belonging to the Armed Peoples on Duty."
Typically, a request for an emergency meeting by a U.N. member state is addressed within hours. But the 15-nation council, which approved the military strikes last week, has not been in a rush to address the Libyan request. The council will meet this afternoon at 3 pm, two days after the initial request, to discuss whether to grant the Libyan appeal.
Complicating matters for Qaddafi is the fact that the Libyan mission to the United Nations has been controlled by a renegade diplomatic delegation, headed by Abdelrahman Shalgam and Ibrahim Dabbashi, that has thrown its support behind the rebels and the allied military campaign. Qaddafi has written to the U.N. to withdraw Shalgam’s and Dabasshi’s accreditation.
But the two diplomats continued to make appearances at the Security Council, and have been pressing for the overthrow of Qaddafi’s rule. Qaddafi’s efforts to replace the diplomats with a loyal envoy, Ali Treki, have been unsuccessful.
Here’s a copy of the full letter:
The Great Socialist Libyan People’s Arab Jamahiriyan
The General People’s Committee for Foreign Liaison and International Cooperation
19 March 2011
In my previous letters to you, I emphasized that an external conspiracy was targeting the Jamahiriya and its unity and territorial integrity. I also pointed out that the Security Council had been drawn into implementing this conspiracy by its adoption of resolutions 1970 (2011) and 1973 (2011), under which a ban was imposed on all aviation in the airspace of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.
By taking this decision, the Security Council has paved the way for military aggression against Libyan territory. France and the United States have bombarded several civilian sites, thereby violating all international norms and instruments, most notably the Charter of the United Nations, which provides for non-intervention in the affairs of Member States.
The Libyan Arab Jamahiriya calls on the Security Council to hold an emergency meeting in order to halt this aggression, which is not aimed at protecting civilians, as is purported, but rather to strike civilian sites, economic facilities and site belonging to the Armed Peoples on Duty.
Accept, Sir, the assurance of my highest consideration.
(Signed) Mr. Musa M. Abdussalam Kousa
Secretary of the General People’s Committee for
Foreign Liaison and International Cooperation
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Colum Lynch was a staff writer at Foreign Policy between 2010 and 2022. Twitter: @columlynch
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