Western and Arab allies fighting against Muammar Gaddafi’s regime on Thursday responded to a call from Libyan rebels for more financial help.
The Transitional National Council, Libya’s opposition, made the request at a meeting in Abu Dhabi to discuss a post-Gaddafi Libya.
“We need cash money in our hands, we need to meet our needs, otherwise what’s the point of Nato strikes from up above, us fighting on the ground, when hunger is fighting us from all corners.”
France later offered to unblock nearly 300 million euros of frozen Libyan assets while Italy pledged 400 million of cash and fuel aid.
The US is still holding in 23 billion euros in assets following sanctions on Gaddafi and his aides but Qatar and Kuwait are providing aid. Libya’s rebels say they need cash to pay for salaries and food.
As nations offer greater financial backing to the rebels, they are also lending their diplomatic support.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday described the the opposition as “the legitimate interlocutor” of Libyan people. Her comments were echoed by Spain and Australia, who also recognised the Transitional National Council.