Saturday, February 26, 2011
The UN Security Council voted unanimously to impose sanctions against the Libyan authorities, slapping the country with an arms embargo and freezing the assets of its leaders. The Security Council also referred the ongoing violent repression of civilian demonstrators to the International Criminal Court (ICC).
In its Resolution 1970, the Council obligated all United Nations Member States to "freeze without delay all funds, other financial assets and economic resources which are on their territories, which are owned or controlled, directly or indirectly, by the individuals or entities" listed in resolution.
The Council imposed a travel ban on President Muammar Al-Qadhafi and other senior figures in his administration, including some members of his family and other relatives. "All Member States shall immediately take the necessary measures to prevent the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, from or through their territories or by their nationals, or using their flag vessels or aircraft, of arms and related material of all types, including weapons and ammunition," according to the arms embargo clause of the resolution.
The Council directed the Libyan authorities to cooperate fully with the ICC in its investigations of the situation in Libya since February 15, 2011, while recognizing that the country is not party to the Rome Statute that created the Court.
In remarks to the Security Council soon after the resolution was adopted, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the move, saying that while the measure cannot, by itself, end the violence and the repression, it is a clear expression of the will of a united community of nations. "The actions taken by the regime in Libya are clear cut violations of all norms governing international behaviour and serious transgressions of international human rights and humanitarian law," said Mr. Ban.
"It is of great importance that the Council in response has reached the consensus and is determined to uphold its responsibilities for the maintenance of international peace and security," he said. "The text sends a strong message that gross violations of basic human rights will not be tolerated, and that those responsible for grave crimes will be held accountable."
(Excerpts from a UN Press Release)