Cameron, Obama, Sarkozy: NATO mission now regime change in Libya
MPs have called for Parliament to be recalled to debate David Cameron’s admission that military action in Libya will continue until Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is toppled.
James Kirkup, The Telegraph, April 15, 2011
Conservative and Labour members said that the Prime Minister’s statement – made jointly with Barack Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy – showed that the Libyan mission had moved from its original humanitarian purpose and was now about regime change.
Fuelling concerns about mission creep in Libya, a French minister admitted that the Western coalition risks “moving beyond” the original United Nations resolution that authorised military action to protect Libyan civilians.
When the conflict started last month, Mr Cameron told MPs that the allies were not seeking to remove Col Gaddafi. But in a joint article with his fellow leaders, he declared: “So long as Gaddafi is in power, Nato and its coalition partners must maintain their operations.”
Gerard Longuet, the French defence minister, conceded that ousting the Libyan leader went beyond the authority of UN Security Resolution 1973. “It does not address the future of Gaddafi,” he said. “Perhaps one day the Security Council will make another resolution.”
Paris and London were ready to target Col Gaddafi and his chain of command, he said.