AU recognizes new Libyan leadership

NTC Chairman Mustafa Abdel Jalil during a meeting with Barack Obama at the United Nations in the U.S.

Story highlights

  • The body pledges to support the National Transitional Council
  • The recognition marks another setback for ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi
  • South Africa also says it recognizes the new Libyan leadership

African Union officials have recognized the new Libyan government, marking another setback for ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi.

The body, made up of 54 nations, pledged to support the National Transitional Council as it works toward establishing an inclusive government.

"The African Union stands ready to support the Libyan people ... as they rebuild their country towards a united, democratic, peaceful and prosperous Libya," the bloc said in a statement Tuesday.

It urged Libyan stakeholders to promote national unity, reconciliation and democracy.

South Africa, a major player in the continent, also said it recognizes the new Libyan leadership .

Sabha shows little resistance to NTC
Sabha shows little resistance to NTC


    Sabha shows little resistance


Sabha shows little resistance 02:32
Al Qaeda exploiting Libya's war?
Al Qaeda exploiting Libya's war?


    Al Qaeda exploiting Libya's war?


Al Qaeda exploiting Libya's war? 02:58
Post-Gadhafi era moves forward
Post-Gadhafi era moves forward


    Post-Gadhafi era moves forward


Post-Gadhafi era moves forward 01:23

"The South African government notes and welcomes the decision of the African Union to recognize the National Transitional Council as the representative of the Libyan people," the government said in a statement.

South African President Jacob Zuma has led the African Union mediation group on Libya, and has visited the North African nation as part of the peace efforts.

Zuma has slammed NATO's enforcement of the U.N. resolution authorizing protection of civilians during the Libyan civil war.

"We strongly believe that the resolution is being abused for regime change," Zuma said in June. "These actions undermine the efforts of the African Union in finding solutions to the problems facing its member states."

Before Tuesday, the AU had been slow to recognize the new leadership. Gadhafi served as chairman of the pan-African body in 2009.

The African Union also urged the new leaders to protect foreign workers amid reports that African migrants have been targeted over suspicions that they are pro-Gadhafi mercenaries.

      Battle for Libya

    • Panetta, Dempsey defend U.S. response

      A testy exchange erupted between Sen. John McCain and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey during the latter's testimony about September's deadly attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.
    • Five things from the Benghazi hearings

      Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took on Republican congressional critics of her department's handling of the deadly September terrorist attack in Libya.
    • Children in Benghazi hold up placards reading "No to terrorism" (R) and "yes for stability and security" on January 15.

      Benghazi tries to escape its ghosts

      Bilal Bettamer wants to save Benghazi from those he calls "extremely dangerous people." But his campaign against the criminal and extremist groups that plague the city has put his life at risk.
    • Protesters near the US Embassy in Cairo.

      Dispute over how attack began

      Was the attack on the Libyan U.S. Consulate the result of a mob gone awry, a planned terror attack or a combination of the two?
    • Image #: 19358881    Christopher Stevens, the U.S. ambassador to Libya, smiles at his home in Tripoli June 28, 2012. Stevens and three embassy staff were killed late on September 11, 2012, as they rushed away from a consulate building in Benghazi, stormed by al Qaeda-linked gunmen blaming America for a film that they said insulted the Prophet Mohammad. Stevens was trying to leave the consulate building for a safer location as part of an evacuation when gunmen launched an intense attack, apparently forcing security personnel to withdraw. Picture taken June 28, 2012. REUTERS/Esam Al-Fetori (LIBYA - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST OBITUARY)       REUTERS /ESAM OMRAN AL-FETORI /LANDOV

      U.S. ambassador's last moments

      Three days before the deadly attack in Benghazi, a local security official says he warned U.S. diplomats about deteriorating security.
    • CNN Arabic

      For the latest news on developments in the Middle East and North Africa in Arabic.