Benelux Joint Statement on International Contact Group Libya 25 August 2011

On 25 August 2011 the International Contact Group on Libya gathered at official level in Istanbul to discuss the recent developments in Libya. The participants welcomed the progress achieved by the Libyan people in shaping their own destiny and in building a free, united and democratic Libya.

They commended the National Transitional Council for its successful leadership. The Benelux countries welcome the declaration of the International Contact Group meeting that the NTC at this stage is considered the sole representative of the state and people of Libya.

It is now up to the NTC to ensure a stable and safe future for the Libyan people. The NTC must show leadership in pointing the road ahead and in pressing forward with an inclusive political process and the post-conflict reconstruction effort. It must ensure a peaceful transition to a free and democratic Libya based on the rule of law and respect for human rights and underpinned by a viable and vibrant economy. This is a great responsibility. At the same time the international community should stand ready to provide institutional support as needed and requested by the interim authorities. We believe that the international community and especially the UN should play a central role in ensuring a smooth and peaceful transition, and we reaffirm the importance of the region and its organisations taking primary responsibility for supporting the Libyan people. The Benelux therefore deems a UN decision essential to pave the way for a new Libya and releasing the frozen assets for the benefit of the Libyan people.

For its part, the Benelux is committed to supporting Libya, bilaterally and within the EU as well as NATO and the UN, in every way necessary, starting from the concrete needs of the Libyan people and their aspirations. The Benelux countries will continue their close cooperation, and look forward to the first meeting of the Friends of Libya in Paris on 1 September, 42 years after Gaddafi’s seizure of power.