Libya no-fly zone vital to halt 'greater bloodshed': Britain

18th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Thursday that the United Nations Security Council's resolution to impose a no-fly zone over battle-torn Libya was vital to "avoid greater bloodshed".

"It is necessary to take these measures to avoid greater bloodshed and to try to stop what is happening in terms of attacks on...the people of Libya," said Hague.

"This places a responsibility on the members of the UN and that is a responsibility to which the United Kingdom will now respond," Hague promised.

Members of the Security Council earlier approved a resolution permitting "all necessary measures" to impose the no-fly zone, protect civilian areas and impose a ceasefire on leader Moamer Kadhafi's military.

The vote passed 10-0 with five abstentions in the 15 member council. Permanent members China and Russia were among those abstaining, but did not use their veto power, which would have sunk the resolution.

A coalition of Britain, France and the United States is expected to launch air strikes imminently as Kadhafi's troops close in on the rebel stronghold of Benghazi.

Britain's Royal Air Force is expected to send Tornado attack aircraft equipped with precise weapons from their bases in Marham, east England, and Lossiemouth in Scotland.

© 2011 AFP

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