Libya’s interim leader has urged NATO to maintain its involvement in the country until the end of the year.
NATO wants to halt their mission within days. But Mustafa Abdel Jalil told a meeting of alliance commanders in Qatar the National Transitional Council needs help stopping Gaddafi loyalists escape justice.
“We still need our friends’ assistance to help us secure borders for our interests, our neighbours interests and those of southern Europe. We seek technical and logistics help from neighbouring and friendly countries,” he said.
But NATO officials have stressed that their UN mandate was to protect civilians, not target individuals. What is more eight-months of air strikes have been extremely costly to both France and Britain.
Our correspondent in Doha, Maha Barada, says:
“Free libya is a slogan that’s been chanted by libyans for many days, now they are on their way to forming a government after Gadaffi. But before that outcome can be finalised many obstacles must be overcome and the friends of Libya may still have a crucial role to play.”