Libya's Parliament votes for international intervention in face of escalating violence

The Libyan Parliament convened Wednesday outside of Tripoli because of escalating violence in the capital, voting in favor of international intervention to protect civilians from rival militia groups. The U.N. mission in Libya, meanwhile, issued a statement noting that "solutions cannot be imposed by force."
By JC Finley  |  Aug. 13, 2014 at 6:18 PM
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TRIPOLI, Libya, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- Libya's Parliament voted Wednesday in favor of international intervention in response to escalating violence in the capital of Tripoli and in Benghazi.

"The international community must intervene immediately to ensure that civilians are protected," said parliamentary member Abu Bakr Biira.

Violence between depleted government forces and Islamist militant gangs has escalated in Libya in recent weeks. The surge of violence in and around the capital forced many embassies and international organizations to shutter.

Parliament convened Wednesday in Tobruk instead of Tripoli because of the unrest, with 111 of 124 parliamentarians voting in favor of international intervention.

It is unclear what form of intervention the parliament is seeking.

The U.N. Support Mission in Libya issued a statement of its own Wednesday, noting that it "continues to make efforts with the parties to reach a cease-fire and embark on a dialogue to coordinate this cease-fire by political means."

Led by the U.N. secretary-general's deputy special representative for Libya and deputy head of UNSMIL, Ould Cheikh Ahmed, the delegation is promoting a political resolution for the conflict-ridden country.

UNSMIL stated Wednesday that "Naturally, the Mission's view is that these solutions cannot be imposed by force," perhaps a response to parliament's vote in favor of international intervention.

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