A series of popular revolts have gripped the Arab world since mid-January. The initial spark came from Tunisia, where riots over a dire economic situation and government repression led to the ouster of President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali on 14 January. In Egypt, massive protests over three weeks eventually culminated in the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, and the country is currently navigating its democratic transition under the rule of a military council. Protests have spread to several countries in the region, including Yemen, Oman, Bahrain and, most notably, Libya, where bloody clashes between government and opposition forces have left hundreds dead, and Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is resisting intense international pressure to resign.
In light of the grave situation in Libya, UN Security Council took immediate effective action aimed at achieving a ceasefire in place and initiating negotiations to secure a transition to a legitimate and representative government. In order to take all necessary measures to protect civilians under threat of attack in the country, including Benghazi, while excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory, United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 1970 on 26th Feb, 2011, which imposes immediate measures to stop the violence, ensure accountability and facilitate humanitarian aid, and resolution 1973 on the date of March 17, 2011 that imposing a ban on all flights in the country’s airspace — a no-fly zone — and tightened sanctions on the Gaddafi regime and its supporters.
Both immediate humanitarian and longer term political considerations require an end to the violence through a cease-fire and negotiations between the two sides.