Arab League meeting ends in Cairo, supports Libya's NTC

Cairo, Egypt (PANA) - Arab Foreign Ministers wrapped up their extra-ordinary meeting on Libya and Syria on Sunday, with a call on the United Nations to hand over Libya's seat at the world body to the National Transitional Council (NTC), which overthrew long-serving leader Mouammar Kadhafi from power.

The Arab League ministerial meeting, which was held at its headquarters in Cairo, Egypt,  recognised NTC as the sole legitimate representative of the Libyan people.

The top Arab diplomats also asked the UN and concerned countries to defrost Libyan state assets and deliver same to NTC, which has said it is in dire need for financial help to relieve stricken areas in the country, restore services and rebuild the war-torn nation.

Represented by its Prime Minister, Mahmoud Jibril, the NTC thanked the Arab League for what it described as its support in unseating Kadhafi from power, after the league had endorsed a UN Security Council resolution that authorized NATO's intervention, with the aim of protecting civilians there from Kadhafi attacks.

The Arab ministers did not discuss Kadhafi's fate, or potential ways of dealing with the man, whose whereabouts is yet unknown.

The African Union (AU) has not yet recognised NTC as the sole legitimate representative of Libyans.

On Syria, the Arab diplomats issued strong condemnation of the crackdown by Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad's forces against protesters in the Arab-Asian country.

According to the league, it had decided to send its Secretary General, Egypt's Nabil Al-Araby, to Damascus with a message to Al-Assad that bloodshed in Syria has to stop.

The Arab League, which Sunday expressed in an official statement its "deep worries about the thousands of casualties in Syria," in what has been one of the bloodiest Arab Spring revolutions, also condemned as "pointless," the use of force against uprisings.

Syria, whose Foreign Minister was absent from the Cairo Arab gathering, is under the pressure of US and European sanctions and the threat of more international punishments related to the crackdown on peaceful protesters, who want to end over 40 years of rule by Al-Assad's family, that included almost three decades for Bashar's father, Hafez.

Russia and China have so far been opposing further international measures against Al-Assad's regime, threatening to veto Western drafted Security Council resolutions.

The Arab League asked the Syrian President to respect the legitimate demands of his people and move ahead with needed political and economic reforms, in order to save his people's lives and save the Arab world from potential further foreign intervention.  
-0- PANA MI/BOS 28Aug2011

28 august 2011 10:42:19

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