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World without Wars and Violence

International Humanist Organisation - Official Website

Regarding the situation in Libya

The Arab Spring continues to spread throughout the Arab world.  Another dictator has gone and Libya, which has been ruled by one of the longest-lasting and most bloodthirsty dictators, is turning the page on an era characterised by the reign of one individual and one family without any respect for democracy and even basic standards of human rights.

Nevertheless, we would not be coherent with our deepest convictions in the strength of nonviolence if we were not to denounce the use of violence by opposition and NATO forces to achieve this revolution and not least because NATO has expressed nothing but indifference and deafness in the case of the people of Yemen and Bahrain—too close to Saudi Arabia and too dangerous to upset—whereas in oil-rich Libya they have intervened with full force!

Libya has been left on the edge of a precipice of revenge and more revenge, in a cycle of violence that will be very hard to stop.  Entrenched positions on both sides of the armed conflict will not cease to seek revenge for past violence, thereby ensuring that revenge will also stain the future.

Today those in control of Libya stand at a crossroads: they can choose the path of doing what’s best for the Libyan people or they can choose the path of doing what’s best for the rotten and immoral economic system which is waiting with drooling lips to feed on Libya’s resources and her people.  To choose the latter will be disastrous for the long-suffering Libyan people.

We in World without Wars express:

- Our anguish at having watched the violence and horror unfold across Libya as violent factions on both sides sought to murder each other.
- Our sympathy and condolences to all those who have lost loved ones or who have been injured in conflict
- Our condemnation of the NATO hypocrisy
- Our hope that from the ashes of this disaster will emerge a democratic, reconciled and prosperous country which can be a beacon of everything good about North Africa and her people.

We declare:

- Our support for the Libyan people in their efforts to rebuild Libya on the basis of real democracy, the rejection of war as a means to solve disputes, the separation of powers, the independence of the judiciary and the values of human rights.
- Our total disagreement with any moves by NATO to deploy troops on Libyan soil under any pretext.
- Our total rejection of any moves to make the people of Libya pay for the war which has been unleashed upon them by forcing Libya to give away oil concessions.

We call for:

- all conflict in the country to cease immediately and for all weapons now widely distributed in the hands of citizens to be handed in for destruction under the supervision of specially appointed UN peace keeping forces.
- the creation of a democratically elected Constituent Assembly to gather the requirements of all sectors of Libyan society so that this may guide the writing of a new constitution which will lead to elections in which all Libyans may peacefully and freely express their political choices.
- the creation of a commission of national reconciliation so that disputes and grievances may be heard and justice can be seen to be done, so that Libyans can get on with their lives in peace and nonviolence.