New Delhi, Oct 21: French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe has said that NATO’s operation in Libya can be considered over now that Muammar Gaddafi is dead and the new regime is in control of the entire country
I think we can say that the military operation is finished, that the whole of Libyan territory is under the control of the National Transitional Council and that, subject to a few transitory measures in the week to come, the Nato operation has arrived at its end,” The Telegraph quoted Juppe, as saying.
Insisting that the Libyans “have their destiny in their hands,” Juppe said: “The operation must now conclude because our objective, which was to accompany the forces of the National Transitional Council in the liberation of their territory, has now been reached.”
“Our goal was not to kill Gaddafi. When I say us, I’m talking about the coalition, of France within Nato. Our goal was to force him to relinquish power. It was then up to the National Transitional Council to capture and judge him,” he added.
French, US and British forces spearheaded the air campaign against Gaddafi’s military by the NATO military alliance, which has launched nearly 1,000 strike sorties since March 31.
Gaddafi, who ruled Libya for 42 years, died on Thursday as his last stronghold fell to the Libyan forces that drove him from power. There were conflicting initial reports of the specific circumstances of his death, with some saying that he was killed in Sirte, his hometown, while others said he died while fleeing it. (ANI)