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Pro-Gadhafi forces continue assaults, despite government cease-fire
Residents of Misurata and Adjabiya in Libya said pro-Gadhafi forces were continuing an assault on their cities, hours after the Libyan government had announced a cease-fire in response to a U.N. Security Council resolution.
In satellite phone interviews with The Washington Times on Friday, residents reported no interruption in fighting between anti-government and pro-Gadhafi forces.
A rebel in Misurata, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the international community must conduct airstrikes on the city to deter Col. Moammar Gadhafi’s forces.
Phone, electricity and water connections to the rebel-held cities had been cut off.
“Moammar Gadhafi has a choice,” Mr. Obama said. “The United States, the United Kingdom, France and Arab states agree that a cease-fire must be implemented immediately. That means all attacks against civilians must stop.
“Gadhafi must stop his troops from advancing on Benghazi, pull them back from Ajdabiya, Misurata and Zawiya, and establish water, electricity and gas supplies to all areas,” he said.
“These terms are not negotiable. These terms are not subject to negotiation. If Gadhafi does not comply with the resolution, the international community will impose consequences, and the resolution will be enforced through military action,” the president said.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will travel to Paris on Saturday to participate in a meeting with European and Arab allies on enforcing the Security Council resolution.
“And we are not going to use force to go beyond a well-defined goal - specifically, the protection of civilians in Libya,” he added.
Speaking in Tripoli earlier on Friday, Libyan Foreign Minister Mousa Kousa announced the regime’s decision to implement the U.N. resolution’s call for a cease-fire.
Calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities, Sen. John Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said: “We need to see results and not just rhetoric.”
“In other words, President Reagan’s old maxim demands revision: ‘don’t trust - verify,’ ” Mr. Kerry added.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
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