UNSC slaps sanctions on Libya as Gaddafi remains defiant

Posted By: Pti
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Younis said he has called on Gaddafi to end his resistance to the uprising, although he does not expect him todo so.

In Washington, US President Barack Obama telephonedGerman Chancellor Angela Merkel to discuss the deterioratingsituation in Libya.

"The President stated that when a leader''s only meansof staying in power is to use mass violence against his ownpeople, he has lost the legitimacy to rule and needs to dowhat is right for his country by leaving now," the White Housesaid in a statement after the telephonic conversation betweenObama and Merkel.

Asserting that Gaddafi has lost the confidence of hispeople, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said it is timethat the Libyan leader quits without further bloodshed andviolence.

"We have always said that the Gaddafi government''sfuture is a matter for the Libyan people to decide, and theyhave made themselves clear," she said in a statement.

Several western countries have evacuated their embassystaff and other foreign nationals from Libya in secretmilitary operations and temporarily closed their diplomaticmissions there.

Over 130 foreigners, among them dozens of Germans and EUnationals, were flown out of Libya yesterday by two Germanmilitary aircraft in a daring operation in which armedsoldiers were reportedly involved.

The rescue operation, without the permission ofthe Libyan authorities, was approved by Chancellor AngelaMerkel and Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg.

The US, Canada, Britain and France have temporarilyclosed their diplomatic missions in Tripoli after evacuatingtheir ambassadors and embassy staff, media reports said.

British Defence Secretary Liam Fox said two Royal AirForce C130 Hercules aircraft landed in the desert nearBenghazi in a secret operation and evacuated about 150 workersof British and other nationalities and they were flown toMalta.

The Canadian embassy in Tripoli also suspended itsoperation after its ambassador, five embassy staff, 18 otherCanadians, 12 British nationals and the Austrian embassy staffwere evacuated on board a military aircraft, which had nopermission to land in Libya.

In Paris, the French Foreign Ministry said its embassy inTripoli was closed down temporarily after its ambassador andthe entire embassy staff were evacuated on board a French airforce plane. The aircraft carried 128 foreigners, including28 French nationals and the entire embassy staff.

Libya''s former justice minister Mustafa Mohamed AbudAjleil, meanwhile, reportedly said that he had formed atransitional government based in the eastern city of Benghaziwhich would lead the country for three months to prepare forelections. He said the transitional government includesmilitary as well as civilian representatives.

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