Humanitrian Intervention in Libya 2011

UN NATO Intervention in Libya

After Qadhafi’s regime large-scale killing of civilians during February 2011, NATO addressed the United Nations’ (UN) call to the international community to secure the Libyan citizens from the drastic situation they were living in. The situation in Libya became increasingly since the revolution of February 2011; the Libyans protested against Qadhafi and called for the removal of the regime, leading to a civil war. Fifteen member of the UN Security Council voted for the military intervention in Libya as to remove Qadhafi’s regime (Resolution 1973). On 19 March 2011, a multi-state coalition started a military intervention in Libya to execute the Security Council Resolution. The UN called for a cease fire in Libya as Qadhafi was committing crimes against humanity and imposed sanctions over Qadhafi’s regime. NATO began military strikes as a UN authorized Humanitarian intervention in Libya.
The United Nations Security Council resolution 1973 formed the legitimate premise for military intervention in the Libyan Civil War, requesting an immediate ceasefire and approving the international community to create a no-fly zone and to utilize all methods necessary short of foreign occupation to protect civilians from Qadhafi. The resolution was adopted under chapter VII of United Nations charter, which allows the Security Council to maintain and restore international peace and security. It permits the Council to respond to “any risk to the peace, break of the peace, or act of aggression” and to make military and nonmilitary moves to “restore global peace and security”(United Nations).
The United Nations Security Council resolution 1973 listed eight points during the intervention in Libya: it demanded the immediate enforcement of the cease fire and complete end of violence against civilians, imposed a no fly zone over Libya, authorized all necessary means to protect civilians, enforced the arms embargo against Qadhafi, imposed a ban on all Libyan flights, forced an asset freeze on assets owned by the Libyan authorities and the Libyan regime, so that these assets could be used for the benefit of the Libyan people. The resolution also provided for the arming of anti-Gaddafi forces, but this point brought massive controversy as some people argued it was illegal.” David Cameron and Hillary Clinton who both warned Muammar Gaddafi that he would face continued military action if he refuses to abide by UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973” (Gabbat, Wells). Both of David Cameron and Hilary Clinton warned Qaddafi form using armed forces against civilians because this will be a breach to the UN Security Council resolution 1970 and 197; Qaddafi totally ignored the warning of both of them. The Libyan opposition forces cheered and celebrated as soon as the resolution was adopted.
There is massive distinction between UN authorized action and unilateral humanitarian intervention. According to the UN charter chapter seven ” The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security”(United Nations). Humanitarian intervention could sometimes be considered legal under international law and other cases could been seen unlawful. In the Libyan case Humanitarian Intervention is considered legal because it has been proven that Qaddafi’s regime committed massacre against civilians therefore terms of intervention prevails. The situation in Libya was severe as Gaddafi was killing his own citizens without mercy and casualties were rising highly. The situation came to point that there must be an international intervention in Libya to prevent from an occurrence of a possible genocide (Kuperman).
Do we consider the intervention in Libya as a legal action? The intervention in Libya prevented a looming bloodbath in Benghazi and encouraged the ouster of Libya’s abusive ruler Muammer al Ghaddafi, who had focused on killing peaceful civilian protesters. The timing was additionally opportune, as the UN resolution gained the support of the Arab League, Organization of the Islamic Conference, and Gulf Cooperation Council. All these organizations supported the UN’s no-fly zone over Libya. States which voted in favor of the resolution agreed that the strong action was vital to protect civilians from further harm ” because the Gaddafi administration was going to unleash more savagery on the regular citizens in the restriction fortresses in the Eastern part of Libya (United Nations) Intervention by states in the region of a sovereign state is generally restricted in international law by the doctrine of non-intervention, but humanitarian intervention has been defined as the utilization of force in purpose of protecting the people of another state from treatment which is so arbitrary and persistently abusive as to surpass limits of power inside which a sovereign is alleged to act with reason and equity.
To be more specific, the starting point of the lawful investigation is the basic prohibition in international law on the utilization of armed power against the territorial reliability or political freedom of any state. The two essential special cases to the dis-allowance are self-preservation, which is clearly not applicable here, and operations approved by the United Nations Security Council in response of a danger to global peace and security. There is no doubt, subsequently, that if the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution approving the imposition of a no-fly-zone to keep up peace and security in and around Libya, as it did in Iraq in the 1990s, the U.S. and its NATO allies could do as such with the full imprimatur of international law. The humanitarian intervention In Libya considered legal due to the targeting of civilians by Qaddafi’s regime and according the security council qaddafi was pressured by the US and international community to take actions to take actions to protect people.

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2 Responses to Humanitrian Intervention in Libya 2011

  1. marwannaim says:

    I personally believe that the Libyan case is one of the worst examples of abusing the doctrine of humanitarian intervention.It was not a case of even potential genocide or the propagated massive violations of human rights that formed the pretext for intervention. Although, Gaddafi’s famous speech urged his supporters to show no mercy, but he meant the rebel fighters not the civilians and he, also, promised amnesty to those who throw their weapons away. And human rights investigators from Amnesty International and HR Watch disproved the evidence of the deliberate targeting of civilians or aircraft being used against protesters. Therefore, the intervention was not lawful and it only brought a worse situation for civilians, because its purpose was to change the regime not to fulfill their “responsibility to protecting” the Libyans.


  2. yasminehafez says:

    I agree with Marwan,

    I believe that the human intervention was misused and this could be shown in its consequences 3 years later. Today, Libya is a failed state ruled by malicious groups and who faces the danger of ISSIS in the region. The intervention had caused more death and destruction in the infrastructure of the country more than it had helped it to develop.
    The human intervention concept could be judged by what it had caused rather by what it had stopped …


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