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Libya contact group calls on Gaddafi to surrender

(Xinhua)

10:07, August 26, 2011

ISTANBUL, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) -- The Libya contact group called on the embattled Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and his inner circle to surrender at the conclusion of its meeting in Istanbul on Thursday.

The Libya contact group meeting at the level of political directors stressed the need for Gaddafi and his inner circle to turn themselves in to justice in order to prevent further bloodshed and the destruction of national infrastructure.

The contact group said the Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) is the sole representative of the state and people of Libya.

It was also agreed that the United Nations should lead all the international efforts aimed at helping Libya in the post-conflict period.

While underlining the crucial role of NATO and its partners in Libya, the group stressed the need for the Operation Unified Protector to continue until the UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973 are fully realized.

The group reiterated its commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Libya and urged the NTC to embrace an orderly transition phase to constitutional democracy based on the principles of inclusiveness, and avoidance of retribution and vengeance.

Officials from 29 countries and 7 organizations convened in Istanbul on Thursday to seek ways for the international community to cooperate to provide political guidance to the NTC and potentially release the frozen funds as the rebels look to strengthen their grip on the reins of power.

The UN Security Council began a meeting on Wednesday to discuss a U.S. proposal to release the frozen Libyan assets to pay for emergency humanitarian aid.

The Libya contact group was created in London on March 29 and comprises around 30 countries and international organizations, including the United Nations, the European Union and the Arab League.


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