Italy Asks NATO To Consider Ceasefire In Libya

Libya bombing

The stalemate in the international effort to oust Muammar Qaddafi is beginning to take a toll on coalition forces.

Today, Italy expressed its support for an immediate cessation of hostilities in order to open up a supply line to allow humanitarian aid to pass into the country, the Financial Times reports.

But Lt. Gen. Charles Bouchard, the Canadian general leading the NATO war effort, says that would only help Qaddafi consolidate his power.

“A ceasefire, temporary in nature, cannot be just an opportunity for both sides to reload and to engage in further violence down the road,” Bouchard told Canadian reporters. “We must continue to stay engaged.”

Amr Moussa, the head of the Arab League, initially supported the allied air strikes but has more recently demurred. Citing civilian casualties, Moussa seconded Italy’s call for a ceasefire.

“Now is the time to do whatever we can to reach a political solution,” Moussa told the Guardian. “That has to start with a genuine ceasefire under international supervision.”

Congressional Republicans introduced two resolutions today regarding the continuation of American combat operations in Libya. One would allow the president to continue military operations for another year, while the other would force President Barack Obama to halt all air strikes against the Qaddafi government.

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