Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Libya says Qadhafi must remain in power

The Libyan government has conceded to political reform, but made it clear that Colonel Mu'ammar Qadhafi must remain in power. A government spokesman, Moussa Ibrahim, said Qadhafi was a "unifying figure" figure in Libya, and defended his forces, saying they only targeted armed rebels not civilians.

Speaking to State TV, Qadhafi's son Saif Al-Islam Qadhafi said Libya's Foreign Minister Musa Kusa had not defected from the regime by fleeing to the UK. Saif alleged that Kusa had travelled to Britain for health reasons, and was being coerced into making allegations against Libya. He also denied allegations that Kusa knew incriminating details about the Lockerbie bombing, saying there no more “secrets”.

The situation in Libya has reached a stalemate, with the rebel fighters in a continuous tussle over the eastern oil hub of Brega. Nearly two months since the revolt against Qadhafi began, the country remains effectively split between the rebel forces in the east and government loyalists in Tripoli and the west.

Speaking about the situation in Libya, Ibrahim said Qadhafi was "a safety valve for the country to remain together" adding, "many Libyans, many Libyans want him to lead the process forward because they are scared if he is not there for any reason we will have what happened in Iraq, we will have what happened in Somalia, we will have what happened in Afghanistan."

The spokesman also announced that the country was open to political reform such "elections, referenda" but noted that "the leader has to lead this forward".

Sources: BBC News, Aljazeera, The Daily Telegraph, Xinhua

For more news and expert analysis about Libya, please see Libya Focus and Libya Politics & Security.

No comments:

Post a Comment