- The Washington Times - Monday, February 28, 2011

The European Union imposed wide-ranging sanctions against Libya on Monday as Moammar Gadhafi’s violent crackdown on anti-regime protesters entered its third week.

The restrictions include an embargo on arms, ammunition and other items that “might be used for internal repression”; a visa ban; and a freezing of assets targeting Col. Gadhafi and dozens of members of his family and inner circle.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said Monday that the measures, which go beyond those outlined in a U.N. Security Council resolution adopted Saturday, would “come into force quickly.”

“The massive violence against peaceful demonstrators shocks our conscience,” she said. “It should spring us into action.”

The EU reportedly is considering an emergency summit on the Libya crisis this week at the behest of French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

In a speech on Sunday, Mr. Sarkozy called for “a common strategy in the face of the Libyan crisis, the consequences of which could be very significant for the stability of the entire region.”