By Hadi Fornaji.
Tripoli, 9 May 2013:
The three main Western powers whose military intervention was vital in helping defeat the Qaddafi regime and ensure the 2011 revolution succeeded have made a powerful appeal to Libyans to “refrain from armed protest and violence during this difficult time in the democratic transition”.
In a rare joint statement, the British, French and American governments said that Libyans had “bravely fought and overthrew a dictator in order to ensure a stable, free, and prosperous future for themselves and their children in a country governed by the rule of law”.
The statement made clear that the present crisis, with armed militiamen trying to force the elected representatives into making decisions was unacceptable and went against the spirit of the revolution. The international community, it said, was highly concerned about what was happening. The Libyan government and Congress had to be free from armed intimidation.
“The democratically-elected representatives and leaders of the Libyan people must be able to carry out their duties and move forward with the constitution motivated by their responsibility to the Libyans who elected them rather than by the threat of force.”
Reinforcing their support ofr Libya’s successful transition from “ruthless dictatorship to democracy, stability and prosperity” France, the UK and the US said it could only happed in there was respect and support for state institutions and the country democratically elected leaders.
“Following the adoption by the GNC of the Political Isolation Law, we call on all Libyans to work together to realize the goals of the 17 February revolution and encourage the development of a democratic state that Qaddafi never permitted.”
The European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton, also called on Libyans to respect their leaders, saying that the sieges on the ministries undermined Libya’s transition to freedom and democracy.
“It is vital that the interests of the nation and respect for the democratic values which triggered the 17 February Revolution prevail,” she said.