United Nations Security Council Resolutions in Africa : the conundrum of state and human insecurity in Libya.
Both interventionist and anti-interventionist scholars have advanced the view that the 2011 Libyan conflict probes the need to establish an international organisation to settle disputes between nations with a view to maintaining international peace and security. Ironically, 67 years after the founding of the United Nations, post-colonial African states remain deeply troubled and affected by conflicts that are often exacerbated by United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions. The 2011 Libyan conflict was not a war for democracy; rather, it represented and demonstrated clearly the asymmetrical relations between Africa and Europe. This study therefore, is anchored on the thesis that the Western Countries—especially Britain and France—within the UNSC ignore the values that are embodied in the Treaty of Westphalia which established state sovereignty. Some Permanent five (P5) members of the UN were typically insensitive to Libya’s sovereignty and to the creed of democracy and this inevitably undermined the national security of the state in favour of the ‘Responsibility to Protect’ clause. The outsourcing of the UNSC’s mission, among other things, in Libya to ensure ‘international peace and security’ to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) was a critical reason for the loss of human lives and values in the 2011 Libyan pogrom. The introduction of a no-fly zone over Libya and the use of Responsibility to Protect (R2P) contained in UNSC Resolution 1973 clearly stoked the conflict in Libya in order to further the political and pecuniary interests of some of the P5 members. The involvement of NATO and the attendant bombing campaign in Libya served to undermine the militarily weak continent of Africa in its effort to broker peace under the umbrella of the African Union (AU). In order to secure these political and economic interests, the NATO jet bombers declared war against a sovereign UN member state and openly participated in the eventual overthrow and death of the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi. In essence, this study underscores that the use of Responsibility to Protect in Libya was orchestrated at the highest level of international politics to justify external interference and ultimately, to secure regime change in Libya. The net effect of the outcome of the 2011 Libyan conflict is the post-war imperial control of Libya’s natural resources facilitated by the National Transition Committee established by these imperial forces. The extent of the damage caused by the UN-backed NATO intervention in Libya is also the result of the collective failure of the African Union to assert itself in the Libyan situation.