HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani yesterday said the responsibility of rebuilding Libya as a national sovereign state was on the Libyan people and their leadership.
He was addressing a conference in Paris attended by Libya’s new leaders and their foreign allies to co-ordinate political and economic reconstruction.
The Emir stressed that the goal was the liberation of the will of the Libyan people and not shackling them with new restrictions.
He said the transformation happening in Libya was an expression of the will of the Libyan people.
The transformation was difficult, the Emir said, pointing out that Libyan citizens who marched in peaceful demonstrations were met with weapons and even sometimes with heavy weapons, and that is why they were forced to defend themselves.
“We all (Arabs and international community) found ourselves at the crossroads about what is happening, and about what should be done. Shall we let them be killed or shall we assume our responsibility as Arabs and the international community?” the Emir asked.
“We have taken our decision to give them protection and we understand the great the responsibility we have.”
French President Nicolas Sarkozy greets HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani as he arrives for the Libya conference held at the Elysee Palace in Paris yesterday
The Emir said the measures taken were not a substitute for the efforts of the Libyan people and that the aim was to protect them.
He said gradual and careful reforms were the best way to achieve the hopes of Arab societies to live in dignity in countries ruled by good governance.
The insistence on rejecting reforms is no longer convincing people to give up their demands, especially at a time when the communities broke the barrier of fear and are seeking to make the change for themselves, the Emir said.
He also said the unconditional help for the Libyan people should not be a burden on them and should not constitute a violation of their sovereignty in the future.
The Emir said the major tasks for the next stage in Libya start with institution-building and the rule of law, and then the free election of representatives of the people as well as ensuring the independence of the judiciary and civil liberties.
He noted there were necessary and urgent conditions to be met in order for the Libyan people to implement these tasks. The most important of these is to maintain security, deliver services to citizens and achieve national unity which can ensure the organisation of elections and realise a constitutional consensus, he said, stressing on the need to prohibit any form of retaliation or retribution at this transitional stage.
The Emir urged the Libyans to refrain from aggression against the citizens or their property, adding that in Libyan people must have equal citizenship, political, civil and social rights, including their right to participate in deciding the fate of their country.
He underscored that the duties of the coalition should be limited to rid Libya of the burden of the sanctions imposed on the former regime.
In this regard, he asked for funds to be unfrozen, and asked for the provision of necessary assistance in the process of institution-building, especially at this difficult transitional stage to revive production and trade as well as allow Libyans to rebuild their own state.
Libyans do not lack resources and skills to build a developed country that enjoys a friendly relations and co-operation with Arab, European and African states, the Emir said.
He expressed his appreciation for the coalition countries that had effectively helped the Libyan people achieve their legitimate demands for freedom and a decent living in their homeland, and added this was a model for an Arab-international co-operation.
The conference was attended by HE the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabor al-Thani.