France Pushes for EU Sanctions to Break Libya Government Logjam
An article from The Guardian discusses the possibility of France proposing sanctions against certain Libyan politicians that have been resisting the formation of a UN-back Libyan government. The purpose of this effort would be to help ensure the successful formation of such a unity government that would potentially allow for increased Western intervention within Libya. The degree to which such sanctions would be effective is debatable; moreover, this proposition comes a time when even Western powers are criticizing each other over how to proceed.
In a bid to end the impasse, the French foreign minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, said of the current Libyan leadership: “I do not exclude threatening them with sanctions. In any case, that is what I will propose to my foreign affairs colleagues on Monday in Brussels.”
“Now, we can wait no longer,” he added, denouncing those who “put themselves in the way out of self-interest. We have to fight Daesh [Isis] where it is trying to develop in Libya, but the precondition is the constitution of a new national unity government,” Ayrault told i-Télé.
The Libyan issue has been given added political force after Barack Obama criticised David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy for failing to do more to guarantee a political settlement in Libya after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.
Obama’s stinging criticism, expressed in Atlantic magazine’s interview with the famously anti-interventionist president, will be deeply wounding to Cameron, even though Downing Street says it is less interested in an inquest than in resolving Libya’s political problems.
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