From Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (UK WILPF)
The UK Section of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (UK WILPF) is concerned with the equal participation of African women in peace and security processes as well as issues of human rights on the continent.
Our Section’s Voices of African Women campaign group* is extremely troubled by the worsening situation in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. In particular we are concerned with NATO’s excessive military aggression and with the UK government’s actions, which are fuelling a civil war in the North African country.
We deplore the UK government’s use of excessive military aggression namely through the government’s announcement that it will imminently make four Apache helicopters available to the NATO mission in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. Further, the sending of military advisors to Libyan rebel forces -The Transitional National Council (TNC) is fuelling a civil war.
NATO’s escalating air strikes in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya including the targeting of Muammar Gaddafi’s compounds and the death of his son, further demonstrates NATO’s agenda of “regime change”.
We would like to remind the UK Government and NATO that United Nation’s Security Council Resolution 1970 and 1973 respectively do not authorise regime change; the removal of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi from power or the injuring or killing of Colonel Gaddafi. UNSRC 1973 in particular refers to the implementation of – the protection of civilians; no fly zone, arms embargo, ban of flights and the freezing of assets.
We would like to remind the UK Government and other members of NATO of their commitment to international law; the Security Council, state sovereignty, diplomacy and peace. Agreed UN Security Council Resolutions with different objectives cannot be manipulated to effect regime change
The Voices of African Women campaign group particularly urges the UK Government and NATO to recognise African regional bodies and their diplomatic efforts in securing a ceasefire. An Extraordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union on the State of Peace and Security in Africa was convened on 25th May 2011 and the African Union High-Level Ad Hoc Committee on Libya convened on the 26th May 2011. They issued a five point roadmap to peace in Libya which is available at
A reinvestment in diplomatic efforts between the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the TNC, the African Union and NATO could secure a ceasefire of hostilities. We urge all parties to abide by the mandate provided by UNSC resolutions 1970 and 1973. The protection of civilians is of paramount importance and the killing of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is unacceptable especially if NATO and the TNC do not recognise diplomatic efforts that have been made by the African Union and the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya for a ceasefire.
*UK WILPF’s Voices of African Women campaign group formed in 2008. Women from many African countries who are living in the UK have come together with British women to develop the campaign and take their concerns to decision makers in national governments, the international community and non-governmental agencies.