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AU Commission chairman is against use of force in Libya

Published the:  22/03/2011

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March 22, 2011 -TAP - Interim President Foued Mebazaa received, on Tuesday March 22, 2011, African Union (AU) Commission chairman Jean Ping, who is on a visit in Tunisia.
Mr. Ping pointed out, at the end of the meeting, that discussion had provided him with the opportunity to pay tribute to the Tunisian Revolution, which was "a spontaneous and peaceful Revolution, and a source of inspiration not only countries of the Arab world but also to countries of Sub-Saharan African, where similar demonstrations have been staged."
He reiterated AU's support to the Tunisian Revolution and its readiness to provide necessary assistance to its democratic transition.
Besides, Mr. Ping voiced the African Union's admiration for the way with which the Tunisian Revolution had been carried out, "in compliance with the Constitution," describing it as "a unique case in the world."
Regarding the crisis in Libya, Mr. Ping recalled AU's "constant stand" in favour of peaceful settlement of conflicts. "The only possible situation for the use of force is when all other solutions have been tried .... and without haste," he specified.
He said that "a fortnight ago before the UN, the African heads of state declared their opposition to a foreign intervention and their support to a clear road map for Libya."
Mr. Ping specified that AU had set about to hold negotiations between the Benghazi National Transition Council and the Libyan authorities in Tripoli "to agree to an immediate ceasefire."
He pointed out, in this regard, the importance of dialogue and the need to undertake all the required reforms to lead the country to a national reconciliation, "so that peace be preserved and Libya's territorial integrity be ensured."
"Libya accepted our road map," he reminded, insisting in this regard that consultations would be carried on next March 25, in Addis Ababa, with neighbouring countries, including Tunisia, the UN Security Council permanent members, other members like Brazil and India, the Arab League and the European Union.
"We will carry on our programme, whatever happens elsewhere in the world," he asserted.