U.S. senators urge arming Libyan revolt

Feb. 27, 2011 at 12:01 PM
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CAIRO, Feb. 27 (UPI) -- Sens. John McCain and Joseph Lieberman Sunday called on the United States to arm the rebels in Libya.

Speaking from Cairo on CNN's "State of the Union," Lieberman, Ind-Conn., and McCain, R-Ariz., backed the call for a no-fly zone to cripple dictator Moammar Gadhafi's forces. But they went further.

"I begin with the imposition of a no-fly zone so that Gadhafi can't be attacking his own people from the air or flying in more mercenaries," Lieberman said. "I think we ought to recognize the opposition provisional government as the legitimate government of Libya and we ought to give that government certainly humanitarian assistance and military arms, not to go in on the ground ourselves but to give them the wherewithal to fight."

McCain agreed, adding that the United States should "make sure that every one of the mercenaries know that any acts they commit they will find themselves in front a war crimes tribunal. Get tough."

Gadhafi's "days are numbered," McCain said. "The question is how many people are going to massacred between now and when he leaves? We ought to shorten that time frame as much as possible. I believe we can."

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