U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, released the following statement today on the situation in Libya and the need for further U.S. and international action against the Libyan regime:
"The executive order freezing the assets of Libyan regime officials and blocking defense-related exports to Libya is a positive first step, but stronger penalties must be imposed in order to hold the regime accountable for its heinous crimes, and to prevent further violence against the Libyan people.
"Additional U.S. and international measures should include the establishment and enforcement of a no-fly zone, a comprehensive arms embargo, a travel ban on regime officials, immediate suspension of all contracts and assistance which benefit the regime, and the imposition of restrictions on foreign investment in Libya, including in Libya's oil sector.
"Furthermore, the resolution on Libya which the UN Human Rights Council passed yesterday was an overdue, reactive, and insufficient measure by a deeply flawed body whose membership remains dominated by human rights violators, including Libya itself. How many innocent people had to be killed or imprisoned by the Qaddafi regime before the Human Rights Council would finally act?
"I urge the U.S. to call for a vote in the UN General Assembly to immediately suspend Libya's membership on the UN Human Rights Council. I also call on the Administration to end U.S. participation in and funding for the Council until real membership standards are adopted to prevent human rights violators like Libya from becoming members in the first place."