Libya suspended from the UN Human Rights Council

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told a regular session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Monday that “Today the world’s eyes are fixed on Libya. We have seen Colonel Qadhafi’s security forces open fire on peaceful protestors again and again. They have used heavy weapons on unarmed civilians. Mercenaries and thugs have been turned loose to attack demonstrators. There are reports of soldiers executed for refusing to turn their guns on their fellow citizens, of indiscriminate killings, arbitrary arrests, and torture.  Colonel Qadhafi and those around him must be held accountable for these acts, which violate international legal obligations and common decency. Through their actions, they have lost the legitimacy to govern. And the people of Libya have made themselves clear: It is time for Qadhafi to go – now, without further violence or delay”.

Clinton added: “The international community is speaking with one voice and our message is unmistakable.  These violations of universal rights are unacceptable and will not be tolerated. This Council took an important first step toward accountability on Friday by establishing an independent commission of inquiry.  On Saturday in New York, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution imposing an arms embargo on Libya, freezing the assets of key human rights violators and other members of the Qadhafi family, and referring the Libyan case to the International Criminal Court. Tomorrow, the UN General Assembly should vote to accept the recommendation to suspend the Qadhafi government’s participation here in the Human Rights Council. Governments that turn their guns on their own people have no place in this chamber”.

On Tuesday in New York, the UN General Assembly suspended Libya from the Human Rights Council.  It is the first time that this has ever happened.

Afterwards, the U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice tweeted:
“This is another clear warning to #Qadhafi and those who still stand by him: they must stop the killing. He must go, and he must go now”
“All 192 member states just agreed to suspend #Libya from Human Rights Council. Unprecedented”.

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