Italy Appeals to NATO to End Fighting
The Italian government called on world leaders and NATO to do what it must to end the bloodshed in Libya. Meanwhile NATO defended the value of its air strikes despite the tragic misfiring of bomb which killed civilians when it misfired.
Franco Frattini, the Foreign Minister to Italy, said on Tuesday that the value of NATO’s air defense and attacks is brought into question whenever civilians are killed. Frattini added that it was crucial that NATO make sure that it does not add more ammunition into the propaganda war which Qaddafi is fighting.
“With regard to NATO, it is fair to ask for increasingly detailed information on results as well as precise guidelines on the dramatic errors involving civilians,” Frattini said.
Nine Civilians Dead
Frattini made his remarks in response to the misfiring of a NATO bomb in Tripoli. Up to nine civilians have been reported killed, according to Libyan official news sources.
NATO Wing Commander Mike Bracken, NATO’s military spokesmen responded to Frattini’s comments.
“I would suggest that our reputation and credibility is unquestionable. What is questionable is the Qaddafi regime’s use of human shields, (and) firing missiles from mosques.”
Embarrassment for NATO
The tragic incident is a high profile embarrassment for the NATO mission in Libya which boasts that its presence is there solely to protect civilians from the brutality of the Libyan regime. It also comes immediately after a friendly fire event last week which saw NATO firing on a line of rebel vehicles from the warplanes.
“If you look at our track record, we have taken utmost care to avoid civilian casualties and we will continue to do so,”
said NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu.