Canada freezes Gaddafi assets, calls for resignation

2011-02-28 07:26

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced yesterday that Canada was freezing assets of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and his family, and called on him to resign.

“Far from protecting the Libyan people against peril, he is the root cause of the dangers they face,” Harper said in a statement broadcast live on television.

“It is clear that the only acceptable course of action for him is to halt the bloodshed and to immediately vacate his position and authority,” he said.

Harper said Canada was implementing the sanctions adopted Saturday by the UN Security Council, and would go beyond them.

Besides freezing the assets of Gaddafi, his family and other associates, Ottawa would freeze all financial transactions with the government in Tripoli and other Libyan institutions, including the central bank, he said.

“Canada demands that the Libyan regime comply with all aspects of this resolution immediately, and that it respect its human rights obligations as well as the will of the Libyan people,” he said.

Harper said his government continued to work for the safe evacuation of Canadian citizens from Libya, as it worked with other countries to step up pressure on the Libyan regime.

He said it has facilitated the evacuation of more than 230 Canadians on flights and vessels, and that a second C-17 transport plane was in Malta awaiting an opportunity to pick up more evacuees.

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