SA's position on Libya unambiguous

Monday, April 4, 2011

Pretoria - South Africa's position regarding Libya remains clear and unambiguous with President Jacob Zuma calling for a ceasefire and a peaceful solution in that country.

In a statement on Sunday evening, the Presidency said it had noted comments in a Zimbabwean newspaper which generated interest relating to South Africa's position on Libya, particularly on the vote for United Nations Security Council Resolution of 1973.

It said that as a member of the African Union, South Africa is committed to the position of the AU Peace and Security Council which reaffirmed Africa's strong commitment to the respect of the unity and territorial integrity of Libya.

"President Zuma has called for an immediate ceasefire in Libya and an end to the attacks on civilians. He also stated that only a peaceful solution, based on the will of the people, will guarantee long-term stability in Libya," said the Presidency.

Zuma forms part of the Ad-hoc High-Level Committee on Libya, comprising five Heads of State and Government, who have been tasked with finding a political solution to the Libyan crisis. South Africa remains committed to working within the ambit of the AU to find a lasting political solution to the Libyan crisis.

Other than the responsibilities South Africa has as a member of the AU, South Africa also has strong historical ties with the North African country that were forged during South Africa's liberation struggle.

"It is for this reason that we stated that Resolution 1973 should not be abused, and should be implemented in letter and spirit to protect Libyan civilians and not to advance other objectives. President Zuma has spoken out unambiguously against the killing of civilians in Libya and reaffirmed the country's rejection of regime change and the foreign occupation of Libya," it explained.

A wave of revolts engulfed Libya over a month ago and threw the country into turmoil. Since then, hundreds of Libyans have been wounded or killed. 

The Presidency added that should the Zimbabwean government wish to understand South Africa's position on Libya or any other, they will contact the South African government through the normal channels as they always do. - BuaNews

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