On March 1, 2011, the UN General Assembly suspended Libya’s membership in the UN Human Rights Council. According to the UN News Service, the decision was based on “gross and systematic” human rights violations because of President Muammar Al-Qadhafi’s ”violent repression of peaceful protesters demanding his ouster.”
On February 25, 2011, the UN Human Rights Council adopted Resolution S-15/L.1 dealing with the human rights situation in Libya.
In addition, on February 28, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered remarks to the Human Rights Council that addressed the importance of civil society. “A vibrant civil society is also an indispensable building block of democracy. And not only in the Middle East but around the world, citizen activists and civic organizations are emerging as strong voices for progress.” In her statement, Secretary Clinton announced certain sanctions the US imposed on Libya.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Congress of South African Trade Union joined CIVICUS and more than 40 other signatories from civil society in a joint statement demanding action from governments in Africa.