Libyan Foreign minister Moussa Koussa yesterday announced: ‘My country will do its best to deal positively with this resolution’, in the wake of Thursday evening’s UN Security Council vote authorising military action against his country.
He told a press conference: ‘The Jamariyah has now got knowledge of this resolution and access to Article 25 of the UN charter and taken into consideration its full membership of the UN.
‘It is obliged to accept UN resolutions. Libya has declared an immediate ceasefire and the stoppage of all military operations.’
He added: ‘We respect all human rights, particularly international human rights laws, and will also protect all foreigners in Libya and their assets.
‘Al Jamariyah will be doing so in accordance with Security Council resolutions and the Charter of the UN.
‘We emphasise in the resolution 1973-2011 and agree to the article on the protection of and the territorial unity of Libya.
‘The Libyan state encourages all channels of dialogue with everyone concerned with the unity of Libya.
‘My country is very serious about continuing the development of the Libyan nation.
‘And we have taken serious steps for the good of the Libyan people.
‘This will take the country back to safety and security for all Libyans.
‘We also express worries about what the resolution has included against the Libyan nation, a no-fly zone which includes Libyan and commercial flights.
‘These will increase the difficulties of the Libyan people and have a negative impact.
‘The international community should have exempted civilians from the resolution to secure their quality of life.
‘Also, the total freezing of Libyan assets and investments has a negative impact on Libyans.
‘Libya also finds that it is unreasonable that the Security Council allows the use of military power and there are signs that this, indeed, might take place.
‘This goes clearly against the UN Charter and is a violation of the national sovereignty of Libya and a violation of Article 42 of the UN Charter.
‘Finally, we insist and repeat our request that all international government organisations and NGOs direct fact-finding missions to Libya.’
France, the UK, and US responded by continuing their war plans.
UK prime minister Cameron told the BBC that ‘all necessary measures will follow.
‘That is what we agreed last night, that is what we are preparing for and we’ll judge him by what he does.’
Cameron received the full backing of Labour leader Ed Miliband when he told parliament earlier: ‘Britain will deploy Tornadoes and Typhoons as well as air-to-air refuelling and surveillance aircraft.
‘Preparations to deploy these aircraft have already started and in the coming hours they will move to airbases from where they can start to take the necessary action.’
French president Sarkozy will host talks in Paris today to discuss co-operation and co-ordinated action against Libya with representatives ‘at the highest possible level’ of the European Union, Arab League, African Union and the UN.
In his statement to the House of Commons, Cameron said: ‘It was the people of Libya, through the Transitional National Council, who were the first to call for protection from air attack through a no-fly zone. More recently, the Arab League have made the same demand.’
He said: ‘In recent days I have spoken with the leaders of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan.
‘And a number of Arab nations have made clear that they are willing to participate themselves in enforcing the Resolution.’
He stressed: ‘As our ambassador to the United Nations said, the central purpose of this Resolution is to end the violence, protect civilians, and allow the people of Libya to determine their own future, free from the brutality unleashed by the Gadaffi regime.’
• In the Yemen, a key US-UK ally, 35 people were killed and 145 wounded by sniper fire at a mass pro-democracy demonstration yesterday in the capital Sanaa.