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U.S., EU Press Demand for Qaddafi Exit

  • RFE/RL

President Barack Obama said the United States and its allies have been tightening the pressure on Libyan ruler Muammar Qaddafi to leave power.

President Barack Obama said the United States and its allies have been tightening the pressure on Libyan ruler Muammar Qaddafi to leave power.

The European Union and the United States have repeated calls for Libyan ruler Muammar Qaddafi to leave power.

The calls came even as Qaddafi's forces claimed additional military gains against rebel fighters who are seeking to end Qaddafi's rule.


Qaddafi's forces on March 11 gave journalists a tour in the town of Zawiyah, which was recaptured from rebels this week.


Qaddafi's forces, which have been using air strikes and artillery, are also reported pursuing attacks on opposition-held areas in eastern Libya.


President Barack Obama said the United States and its allies have been tightening the pressure on Qaddafi to leave power, and that international sanctions and other measures are having an impact.

Obama said imposing a no-fly zone over Libya also remains an option.


"I have not taken any options off the table at this point,” Obama said in Washington. “I think it is important to understand that we have moved about as swiftly as an international coalition has ever moved to impose sanctions on Qaddafi. I am absolutely clear that it is in the interest of the United States and, more importantly, in the interests of the Libyan people for Mr. Qaddafi to leave."


At a summit in Brussels, Belgium, leaders of the EU nations pledged to open a dialogue with Libyan opposition forces, and again called on Qaddafi's regime to quit power.

However, there was no EU agreement on the use of military force to protect Libyan civilians.

compiled from agency reports

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