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Sat 26 Feb 2011 08:04 PM

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Cameron, other leaders back urgent action on Libya

World powers struggle to stop Gaddafi lashing out at his people as he clings to power

Cameron, other leaders back urgent action on Libya
Cameron chaired a meeting of a government crisis committee on Saturday to discuss Libya, has spoken separately to leaders from Germany, Italy and Turkey in the last 24 hours (Getty Images)
Cameron, other leaders back urgent action on Libya
US President Barak Obama signed an order prohibiting transactions related to Libya and blocking property
Cameron, other leaders back urgent action on Libya
Gaddafi, Libyan Leader
Cameron, other leaders back urgent action on Libya
United Nations flag (Getty Images)

British Prime Minister David Cameron and other European leaders agreed the United Nations and European Union should take urgent action to deal with the Libyan crisis, including tough sanctions, Britain said on Saturday.

World powers are struggling to find a way to stop Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi lashing out at his people as he clings to power in Tripoli, the last big city where an uprising against his rule has yet to take hold.

Cameron, who chaired a meeting of a government crisis committee on Saturday to discuss Libya, has spoken separately to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan in the last 24 hours, his office said.

"There was clear agreement that the actions of the Libyan regime were totally unacceptable and that brutality and intimidation would not be tolerated," a spokesman for Cameron said.

"The prime minister was clear that the Libyan regime would face the consequences of its actions. He agreed with counterparts that urgent action was needed through the EU and U.N., including a tough sanctions package targeting the regime directly," he said.

Diplomats at the United Nations said a vote on a draft resolution calling for an arms embargo on Libya as well as travel bans and asset freezes on its leaders might come on Saturday. Britain is a permanent UN Security Council member.

Merkel's spokesman said Britain and Germany had agreed that the EU should impose sanctions on Libya, and hoped that the Security Council would impose strong penalties on Gaddafi's government quickly.

Cameron agreed with the other leaders to closely coordinate efforts to evacuate people from Libya, his spokesman said.

Britain has helped 450 Britons get out of Libya on chartered aircraft and a Navy ship but is concerned about several hundred British oil workers stranded in camps in the Libyan desert.

Cameron has said "planning is under way" to help the oil workers. The Ministry of Defence declined comment on Saturday on reports that special forces were on standby to rescue them.

The wife of a stranded British oil worker told the BBC he had told her on Saturday that "armed buses" had come to pick up workers from one camp 40 minutes away from Tripoli and take them to a nearby port, but she did not know who was escorting them.

Foreign Secretary William Hague has urged British citizens still in the Libyan capital to get to Tripoli airport on Saturday for the last British charter out of the city.

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Wilson 9 years ago

So another Iraq, hey there is free oil available let go and loot.....