Urgent NGO Appeal to World Leaders to Stop Atrocities in Libya
20 February 2011
(…) We urge you to mobilize the United Nations and the international community to take immediate action to halt the mass atrocities now being perpetrated by the Libyan government against its own people. The inexcusable silence cannot continue. (…)
Accordingly, the government of Libya is committing gross and systematic violations of the right to life as guaranteed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Citizens seeking to exercise their rights to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly are being massacred by the government.
Moreover, the government of Libya is committing crimes against humanity, as defined by the Explanatory Memorandum to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. The Libyan government’s mass killing of innocent civilians amount to particularly odious offences which constitute a serious attack on human dignity. (…)
(…) Under the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document, you have a clear and unambiguous responsibility to protect the people of Libya. The international community, through the United Nations, has the responsibility to use appropriate diplomatic, humanitarian and other peaceful means, in accordance with Chapters VI and VIII of the Charter, to help to protect the Libyan population. Because the Libyan national authorities are manifestly failing to protect their population from crimes against humanity, should peaceful means be inadequate, member states are obliged to take collective action, in a timely and decisive manner, through the Security Council, in accordance with the UN Charter, including Chapter VII.
• Suspend Libya’s Council membership, pursuant to Article 8 of Resolution 60/251, due to its commission of gross and systematic violations of human rights.
• Strongly condemn, and demand immediate end to, Libya’s massacre of its own citizens.
• Dispatch immediately an international mission of independent experts to collect relevant facts and document violations of international human rights law and crimes against humanity, in order to end the impunity of the Libyan government. The mission should include an independent medical investigation into the deaths, and an investigation of the unlawful interference by the Libyan government with the access to and treatment of wounded.
• Call on the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights and all of the Council’s relevant Special Procedures to closely monitor the situation and take action as needed.
• Call on the Council to remain seized of the matter and address the Libyan situation at its upcoming 16th regular session in March.
Member states and high officials of the United Nations have a responsibility to protect the people of Libya from what are preventable crimes. We urge you to use all available measures and levers to end atrocities throughout the country. We urge you to send a clear message that collectively the international community, the Security Council and the Human Rights Council will not be bystanders to these mass atrocities. Both the credibility of the United Nations and many innocent lives are at stake. (…)
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