Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Gaddafi's Assets Are Frozen by Britain; Special Forces Rescue More Oil Workers

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Gaddafi's Assets Are Frozen by Britain; Special Forces Rescue More Oil Workers

Article excerpt

Byline: Joe Churcher and Tim Moynihan

THE British Government last night froze the United Kingdom-held assets of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and members of his family with immediate effect.

And a second operation involving UK special forces rescued another 150 civilians from the Libyan desert last night, Defence Secretary Liam Fox said later.

They were flown to Malta on three RAF C130 Hercules aircraft.

Another 50 UK nationals were among 200 people also headed to the Mediterranean island on board HMS Cumberland after its latest foray to the port city of Benghazi. Yesterday evening, coalition Government representatives held an urgent Privy Council meeting with the Queen at Windsor Castle.

It secured formal approval for the UK's implementation of some of the sanctions against the Libyan regime agreed earlier by the United Nations Security Council.

Chancellor George Osborne said the Government had implemented the asset freeze on Mr Gaddafi, five of his children "and those acting on their behalf" with immediate effect.

A ban has been imposed as well by Business Secretary Vince Cable on the unlicensed export of any uncirculated Libyan banknotes.

All existing export licences for goods and technology that could be used for internal repression have been revoked and future licences will be subject to the UN embargo.

Mr Osborne said: "Together with the action taken by William Hague and Vince Cable, this is a strong message for the Libyan regime that violence against its own people is not acceptable." Britain also joined calls for the Libyan leader to quit. Mr Hague said: "Of course it is time for Colonel Gaddafi to go. That is the best hope for Libya". The Foreign Secretary said he had revoked diplomatic immunity for the dictator and his family. In an unprecedented unanimous vote, the UN Security Council also agreed to refer repression of the popular uprising to the International Criminal Court.

A charter flight landed at Gatwick Airport from Malta last night carrying 78 Britons, among them oil workers plucked from remote desert locations by special forces on Saturday. …

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