“All NATO’s targets are military in nature and have been clearly linked to the Qadhafi regime’s systematic attacks on the Libyan population and populated areas. We do not target individuals,” said Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard, Commander of NATO’s Operation Unified Protector.
The strike was part of NATO’s coherent strategy to disrupt and destroy the command and control of those forces which have been attacking civilians.
“I am aware of unconfirmed media reports that some of Qadhafi’s family members may have been killed,” Lieutenant-General Bouchard said. “We regret all loss of life, especially the innocent civilians being harmed as a result of the ongoing conflict. NATO is fulfilling its UN mandate to stop and prevent attacks against civilians with precision and care - unlike Qadhafi’s forces, which are causing so much suffering.”
NATO’s operation is conducted under United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973, which called for an immediate end to all attacks and authorized all necessary measures to protect civilians in Libya. NATO plans and conducts its strikes with great deliberation to minimize the risk to innocent people.
“I want to remind again all civilians in Libya to distance themselves as much as possible from Qadhafi regime forces, equipment and known military infrastructure to reduce the potential danger to them,” Lieutenant-General Bouchard said.
As NATO and partner foreign ministers made clear, NATO will continue operations until all attacks and threats against civilians have ceased; until all of Qadhafi's forces, including his snipers, mercenaries and paramilitary forces have verifiably withdrawn to their bases, and until there is full, free and unhindered access to humanitarian aid to all those in Libya who need it.