UN resolution would create UN mission in Libya

September 14, 2011 - 6:40 PM

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Security Council is considering a new resolution that would establish a U.N. mission in Libya and unfreeze assets of two major oil companies, according to a copy obtained Wednesday by the Associated Press.

Britain circulated the draft resolution to the 15-member council Tuesday night and Western diplomats said they are hoping for a vote by the end of the week. Diplomats said the U.S. and France were involved in the drafting and veto-wielding Russia and China were consulted.

The proposed resolution would modify the arms embargo imposed on Moammar Gadhafi's regime to allow the rebel movement now controlling the country to buy arms "intended solely for security or disarmament assistance." It would also allow small arms, light weapons and related materiel into the country to protect U.N., humanitarian and diplomatic personnel.

Under the proposed draft, the no fly zone and flight ban imposed in March, after Gadhafi launched his crackdown on regime opponents, would remain in place but be kept under review.

It would lift the asset freeze on the Libyan National Oil Corporation and Zueitina Oil Company and modify the asset freeze on the Central Bank of Libya, the Libyan Foreign Bank, the Libyan Investment Authority and the Libyan Africa Investment Portfolio. But it would retain the asset freeze and travel ban against Gadhafi and key family members and regime supporters.

The National Transitional Council, established by the rebels who ended Gadhafi's 42-year rule and sent the former dictator into hiding, has asked the United Nations for assistance as it struggles to establish a government.

The proposed resolution calls for the establishment of a United Nations Support Mission in Libya for an initial period of three months to assist the new government in restoring security and the rule of law, promoting national reconciliation and embarking on the process of writing a constitution and preparing for elections.

It would also authorize U.N. assistance in extending the new government's authority throughout the country.