USA wants UN to allow wider bombing of targets in Libya
U.N. Security Council has authorized no-fly zone over Libya and has said that “all necessary measures” need to be taken to protect civilians.
The term “all necessary measures” is, generally, taken as a code word for military intervention. The UN Security Council vote allows all measures except ground invasion to halt attacks that might result in civilian fatalities.
It is pertinent to note that same Security Council had passed resolution 1441 to allow US and NATO invasion of Iraq, a war that has not come to an end. The pretext for invasion at that time was “finding Weapons of Mass Destruction”.
A statement posted on the UNSC website says that the the imposition of a no-fly zone is intended to halt the aerial bombardment by the Libyan air force of areas currently held by those demanding Mr. Qadhafi’s ouster.
Five (5), including Russia, China and Germany, out of the 15-member Security Council abstained from voting. The resolution was sponsored by USA, UK, France and Lebanon.
The UN resolution comes just a few hours after Gaddafi warned residents of Benghazi, an opposition stronghold, that his forces would show “no mercy” in an impending assault on the city.
“The matter has been decided … we are coming,” he said in a radio address on Thursday.
The Libyan leader called pro-democracy fighters in Benghazi “armed gangsters” and urged residents to attack them, saying: “You all go out and cleanse the city of Benghazi”.