1. After meetings in Doha and Rome, the Contact Group on Libya met for the third time in Abu Dhabi on 9 June co-chaired by the United Arab Emirates and Italy. Representatives of over forty countries and organizations, including the United Nations, the Arab League, NATO, the European Union, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, and the Gulf Cooperation Council, discussed the situation in Libya, developments on the ground, and progress and implementation of decisions since the last meeting of the Contact Group.* The Contact Group continues to serve as the international point of contact for interaction with legitimate representatives of the Libyan population and the coordination of international policy towards Libya. Today it was joined by Bulgaria as a member, and Cyprus, Egypt, Cyprus, Romania, South Africa and Sudan were represented for the first time as observers, demonstrating the widening international support for the actions undertaken by the Contact Group.
2. Consensus is growing around the world that the time has come to open a new chapter in Libya’s history, with a strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Libya. This will be based upon the following established elements:Qadhafi must go ; he has lost all legitimacy and must draw all the consequences by relinquishing power ; the use of force against civilians by Qadhafi and his followers and mercenaries must cease immediately and unconditionally ; military forces must withdraw from those cities they have forcibly entered, occupied, and placed under siege, and return to their barracks ; political transition must be initiated based on the inclusive approach expressed in the Transitional National Council’s “Road Map on Libya”.
3. The Contact Group reaffirmed its solidarity with the Libyan people and deplored the severe magnitude of devastation and civilian casualties as a direct result of the Qadhafi regime’s actions. Participants reiterated their firm intention to further pursue the objectives set by UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973 in order to protect civilians, and to facilitate the start of an inclusive national dialogue in Libya that will lead to reconciliation and reconstruction. Participants appreciated the effective role played by the NATO-led Operation Unified Protector in protecting the civilian population from Qadhafi’s attacks and to achieve the goals of UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973. In this respect, participants welcomed the decision to extend the NATO-operation by 90 days and the increased national contributions to the operation, particularly those by the United Kingdom and France. In this regard, participants encouraged further contributions to NATO’s efforts.
4. The Group took note of the report of the international Commission of Inquiry that was recently submitted to the UN Human Rights Council for discussion.† The report’s conclusion that a significant number of international human rights violations have occurred as well as war crimes reinforces the legitimacy of the international action against the Qadhafi regime. In this respect, the Contact Group welcomed the decision by the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to formally request an arrest warrant for Qadhafi. The Contact Group strongly condemns all violations of international humanitarian and criminal law and deplores all crimes against humanity and war crimes.
5. The Contact Group agreed on the necessity to reinforce international pressure in order to accelerate a political solution to the crisis, and confirmed its determination to use any legitimate means to put an end to the violence in Libya. The ongoing political, economic and military pressure is having a strong impact on the solidity of the Qadhafi’s hold on power. Recent defections of prominent members of the regime are evidence that the current system is disintegrating, and that Qadhafi has lost the trust of his senior military officers. The Contact Group reiterated that all those individuals complicit in the regime’s crimes will be held to account, including all those with ICC indictments or directly involved in ordering attacks on civilians. It called on Qadhafi’s followers who do not want to be associated with human rights violations to disassociate themselves from the regime. Militarily, regime forces have suffered several defeats and have lost control of territory, and NATO has intensified airstrikes on the regime’s command and control sites in and around Tripoli. International progress in implementing UNSCRs 1970 and 1973 (2011)
6. The Abu Dhabi meeting reaffirmed the principles of the meeting in Doha, which called for the departure of Qadhafi, and of the meeting in Rome, which established the mechanism for financial support to the Libyan people. The Contact Group welcomed the statement of the G8 regarding the situation in Libya and subsequent positive actions and statements by a further number of states calling into question the legitimacy of the Qadhafi-regime. The Group issued a strong call upon states to follow suit and publicly condemn Qadhafi and the actions of his regime, in line with UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973.
7. Central to the work of the Contact Group is the drive to isolate Qadhafi and his regime and separate it from assets, services, and goods that support its repression of the Libyan people. The Contact Group therefore welcomed the further implementation of restrictive measures against the Qadhafi regime, including the EU’s decision to designate six ports in Western Libya which will assist in preventing the regime from acquiring resources that fuel its military campaign. Participants urged all states to mirror these measures and to implement in full existing sanctions to maximise pressure on Qadhafi and his followers. The Contact Group welcomed actions by states aimed at more †Report of the International Commission of Inquiry to investigate all alleged violations of international human rights law in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya (A/HRC/17/44) 3 comprehensively freezing assets of individuals and entities connected to the regime and recent actions by satellite operators throughout the Arab world to take off air official Libyan media. It called on all satellite operators to take the same action in order to remove Qadhafi’s poisonous propaganda which contrasts with the free and open channels that are springing up in TNC-controlled Libya.
8. Participants agreed to undertake further actions in coordination with other international partners to widen the scope and objectives of restrictions imposed on the regime with particular reference to the imports of refined products for non-humanitarian use. The meeting strongly urged all countries to cease support to Qadhafi and put an end to actions that prolong the current suffering of the Libyan population at the hand of his regime. Progress in an inclusive political process
9. The future of Libya should be determined by the Libyan people. The Contact Group therefore welcomed the presentation by the TNC of the ‘Road Map for Libya’ as its blueprint for a transition toward a post-Qadhafi political system, based on the principles of inclusion and representation. The Group agreed that the TNC had taken important steps to improve its organization and accountability. The sense of freedom in Benghazi – witnessed by a number of members of the Contact Group – demonstrates the steps the TNC has taken to put its vision into practice. The Group also appreciated the TNC’s efforts to enhance its inclusiveness and to incorporate all components of the Libyan civil society.
10. The Contact Group confirmed the lead role of the United Nations in facilitating dialogue and supporting an inclusive political process through the good offices of the UN Secretary General through his Special Envoy for Libya. It called on all actors to work with and through the UN Special Envoy to find a solution to the crisis based on the legitimate demands of the Libyan people. The Contact Group received presentations by the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy Abdelilah AlKhatib on the political process in Libya, and by the TNC on its Road Map for political transition in the country.
11. The Group appreciated the EU’s decision to open an office in Benghazi and the opening of humanitarian offices there by UN agencies and the OIC. These offices, in addition to the growing number of envoys visiting Benghazi, including from Russia and China as well as visits by the Foreign Ministers of Poland, Italy, the UK, and Spain and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, demonstrate the TNC’s growing legitimacy and will give the international community the opportunity to deepen the cooperation with the TNC and enable more coordinated assistance for humanitarian relief, capacity building, and administration. 4 12. The Contact Group welcomed the further focus on international assistance to the TNC in terms of stabilization, institution-building and capacity-building programs. In parallel to the Contact Group meeting, participants reviewed progress in the coordination of international efforts to create the basis for successful reconstruction in Libya after the end of the conflict. The Contact Group looks forward to the results of the international joint stabilization mission in Benghazi and welcomed all contributions to the international planning led by the United Nations. Support for the Libyan people
13. The United Nations updated the Contact Group on the latest developments regarding the overall humanitarian situation. The meeting repeated its concern for the consequences of the crisis for neighboring countries, as a result of refugee flows and the significant presence of third country nationals in Libya. Participants reaffirmed the need to ensure humanitarian access throughout Libya and encouraged states to lend humanitarian support in relief of the Libyan population. Participants recognized the efforts of the neighboring countries of Libya, in particularly Egypt and Tunisia, in assisting thousands of civilians fleeing the violence in Libya, and stress the need to continue providing these countries with adequate assistance. They also expressed appreciation for the active role by the humanitarian agencies.
14. In the immediate term, the TNC requires international support to meet essential expenditure required for sustaining public services and maintaining basic living conditions among the population. After the initial decision in Doha, and the adoption in Rome of its terms of reference, the meeting in Abu Dhabi fully established the Temporary Financial Mechanism, a crucial instrument to respond to this necessity. The meeting welcomed substantial financial contributions by several countries including Bahrain, Italy, Kuwait, Qatar, Spain, Turkey and the United States. The Contact Group repeated its strong call on the international community to support the TNC through the Temporary Financial Mechanism. In this respect, participants commended the result of the meeting of Contact Group members on the TFM in Abu Dhabi that succeeded in amending the Terms of Reference of the mechanism, which is now operational and ready to receive pledges from states. Participants furthermore agreed that one way to address the humanitarian needs of the population of Libya would be to find a mechanism that will allow the unfreezing of Libyan assets, or to use them as security for financing TNC obligations, consistent with the provisions of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, including in those areas under the control of the TNC. To put financing on a more sustainable footing, participants stressed the importance of international support to help the TNC restart the production and export of crude oil. The Group encourages states to look at how assets that belong to the Libyan people can be best used to help the Libyan people within the context of applicable laws and in the spirit of UN Security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973. In this respect, participants welcomed the letter signed by all members of TNC conveying the message that it will honour all financial obligations incurred toward loaning countries, and committed that in case of non-repayment the value of these loans may be recuperated from the frozen assets held in loaning- 5 countries. The TNC further committed that all future Libyan governments would honour the financial obligations undertaken by the TNC.
15. Participants welcomed the Italian-TNC Joint Declaration signed on May 31, which will establish a formal base to provide to the TNC assistance in terms of supplying of refined oil and international loans. The Contact Group encouraged participants to explore national ways and means to provide substantial financial aid to the TNC, including through mechanisms enabling entities controlled by the TNC to export hydrocarbons and to provide guarantees, thus complementing multilateral mechanisms established to cope with the most urgent needs of the population.
16. Participants welcomed the activation of the Libyan Information Exchange Mechanism, under coordination of Italy, which aims to match requests for assistance by the TNC with offers by donor countries, as well as to better divide labor among donors. The Contact Group invited donors to channel to the designated focal points all information regarding in-kind assistance to the TNC. Continued regional engagement
17. The Contact Group expressed appreciation for ongoing engagement of Arab countries in support of international efforts regarding Libya. The Group noted that the Arab world has been at the forefront of initial action by the international community against the Qadhafi-regime, notably following the statements by the Arab League and the Gulf Cooperation Council. The Contact Group welcomed the participation of the Arab states as indication of regional commitment to and ownership of a solution to the current situation in Libya.
18. Participants welcomed the efforts of the United Nations, the African Union, the Arab League, the European Union, and the Organization of the Islamic Conference to reinforce their coordination. Participants acknowledged the efforts made by the African Union and its ad hoc Committee in order to contribute actively to a political solution of the Libyan crisis, and particularly noted the efforts of President Zuma, as well as the recent statement by President Abdel Aziz, which underscore the reality that Qadhafi can no longer lead. The Contact Group also noted that it looks forward to working with the African Union and the African states to reinforce the message to Qadhafi and his inner circle that it is time for him to go. Next meeting of the Contact Group
19. The participants of the Contact Group expressed their thanks and appreciation to His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates, for organizing and hosting this meeting. It was agreed to hold the fourth meeting of the Contact Group in Turkey at a date to be determined in the near future.