From: Berhane Habtemariam (Berhane.Habtemariam@gmx.de)
Date: Wed Aug 31 2011 - 16:31:52 EDT
implement AU Roadmap'
August 31 2011 at 03:38pm
President Jacob Zuma is trying to re-insert the AU into the Libyan crisis by
persuading the organisation not to recognise the Libyan rebels as the
country's new government until they implement the AU's Roadmap.
Zuma failed over the last few months to persuade Libyan dictator Muammar
Gaddafi and the rebel National Transitional Council (NTC, also known as the
TNC) to implement the AU's Roadmap by ceasing hostilities and negotiating a
This week the NTC ousted Gaddafi's government from the capital Tripoli, but
Zuma is now using AU recognition of the NTC government as an incentive to
the rebels to implement the roadmap even at this late stage.
At least 13 of the AU's 54 members have already recognised the NTC. But the
AU Peace and Security Council - chaired by Zuma - decided in Addis Ababa on
Friday that the AU would not acknowledge the NTC as the legitimate
government. Zuma said yesterday that the AU's Constitutive Act stipulated
"that governments that come to power through unconstitutional means would
not be allowed to participate in the activities of the union. We cannot act
outside of that."
But Zuma said the AU Roadmap was still relevant and if the Libyans adopted
the roadmap and negotiated "a peaceful process that will lead to the
formation of an inclusive transitional government and democracy in Libya",
then the AU would recognise that government.
"We need inclusivity, a situation where all groups involved in the conflict
sit around the table and solve the problem together," said Zuma. "There is
more than one group that claims authority and support in Libya, and a
solution will need to include all of them.
"They must all come together and negotiate a peaceful process that will lead
to the formation of an inclusive transitional government and democracy in
CRISIS TALKS: Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guelleh, left, Ugandan
President Yoweri Museveni and President Jacob Zuma in talks during an
emergency summit of the AU Peace and Security Council in Addis Ababa on
Friday. The AU has called for an inclusive transitional government in Libya.
Zuma again took a sideways swipe at Nato, which has conducted airstrikes
against Gaddafi's forces in support of the NTC and would not stop the
strikes to let the AU Roadmap take effect.
"We still believe that, had the AU been allowed space to work, heavy loss of
life would have been averted," Zuma said.
"Any successful solution in Libya will have to be Libyan-led and African-led
to ensure sustainability, credibility and legitimacy."
However, a senior official close to the negotiations stressed that now was
the time for the UN, Nato, the International Contact Group (representing all
the nations engaged in the military campaign) and the AU to work together to
make Libya democratic and stable.
"Even the US is nervous about whether the NTC will hold together - stability
is the big thing now and an all-inclusive interim government will help to
hold the country together until full elections."
The official also noted that the conflict was not over and that the NTC had
not applied to either the UN or the AU for membership.
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