Libya facing 'many challenges'

Feb. 18, 2013 at 9:58 AM

LONDON, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- The Libyan government is called on to ensure the aspirations of those who supported the 2011 revolution are met, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said.

Libyans took to the streets in what the Tripoli Post described as peaceful demonstrations marking the second anniversary of their revolution.

Hague said Libya has come "a long way" in the two years since demonstrators began their protests against leader Moammar Gadhafi.

The British military helped with a NATO-led intervention in Libya meant to protect civilians from attacks by forces loyal to Gadhafi, who died in October 2011 after falling into rebel hands.

Hague said London called on the new Libyan government to work on reconciliation measures and new laws that would ensure democratic reforms.

"We know that Libya faces many challenges, from building security to ensuring that Libya's natural resources and wealth support economic opportunity and growth that benefits all Libyans," Hague said in a statement.

U.S. President Barack Obama last week extended a national emergency pertaining to Libya for one year.

Obama said the U.S. government is working to erase sanctions imposed on Libya and work more closely with the democratic government in Tripoli.

"The situation in Libya, however, continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States," he said in a statement.

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