Fri, October 21, 2011
World > Africa > War clouds hover over Libya

Canadian PM hails Gadhafi's death

2011-10-20 20:56:34 GMT2011-10-21 04:56:34(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

OTTAWA, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday that days of Libyan former leader Moammar Gadhafi are over as the Libyan National Transitional Council has confirmed his death the same day.

"Never again will he be in a position to support terrorism or to turn guns on his own citizens," Harper said. "The Libyan people can finally turn the page on 42 years of vicious oppression and continue their journey toward a better future."

Harper said at a news briefing that Canada hopes that the Libyan people will find peace and reconciliation after "this dark period in the life of their nation".

He said that with the shadow of Gadhafi now lifted from their land, Canadians look forward to working with the Libyan people.

Harper also hailed the role played by Canada's armed forces in the NATO-led strikes on Gadhafi and his loyalists, including that by Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard of the Royal Canadian Air Force who led the combined NATO military mission in Libya.

Canada has lifted the unilateral economic sanctions it imposed on Libya in the wake of the United Nations resolutions on Libya earlier this year, and is unfreezing about 2.2 billion Canadian dollars in assets belonging to Libyan companies and the former government in support of the Libyan people and the new governing authorities.

Canada has continued to contribute more than 600 soldiers, six fighter planes and a frigate to join other NATO forces.

Earlier on Thursday, Mahmoud Jibril, the prime minister of the Libyan transitional government, said that Gadhafi has been killed as his hometown of Sirte fell to rebel fighters.

"We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Moammar Gadhafi has been killed," Jibril said during a press conference in Tripoli, capital of Libya.

Jibril said that the official liberation of Libya could be declared Thursday, or Friday at the latest, by transitional government chairman Mustafa Abdel Jalil.

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