Libya: UN Security Council Ends Mandate for International Military Operations

NEW YORK–(ENEWSPF)–27 October 2011.  The Security Council today ordered the end to authorized international military action in Libya, more than seven months after allowing United Nations Member States to take “all necessary measures” to protect civilians during a popular uprising against the country’s former regime.

The 15-member UN body unanimously passed a resolution ending the UN mandate allowing military intervention and terminating a no-fly zone over Libya that had also been imposed in March.

After those measures were introduced, members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and other countries carried out air strikes to protect civilians caught up in the fighting between then rebels and forces supporting former leader Muammar al-Qadhafi.

  According to today’s resolution, the authorization will end at 11:59 p.m. local time in Libya on 31 October. Authorization for the no-fly zone will lapse at the same time.

In its resolution today the Council welcomed what it described as positive developments in Libya, saying the North African country now had better prospects for a “democratic, peaceful and prosperous future there.”

The text said the Council looked forward to a swift establishment of an inclusive, representative transitional government, and reiterated the need for the transitional period to be underpinned by a commitment to democracy, good governance, the rule of law, national reconciliation and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms of all people.

The Council strongly urged Libyan authorities to refrain from reprisals, including arbitrary detentions, and called on them to take all steps necessary to prevent reprisals, wrongful imprisonment and extrajudicial executions. Council members also stressed the Libyan authorities’ responsibility for the protection of its population, including foreign nationals and migrants from the rest of Africa.

It called on Member States to cooperate closely with the Libyan authorities in their efforts to end impunity for violations of international human rights and international humanitarian law.

Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) on Sunday declared the full liberation of the country, more than eight months after the popular uprising began, and days after the death of Mr. Qadhafi in his hometown of Sirte.

The pro-democracy uprising in Libya was part of a wider popular movement across North Africa and the Middle East this year that has also led to the downfall of long-term regimes in Tunisia and Egypt.