FATALLA AF ELZUNI, Minister for Youth of Libya, began by expressing deep sympathy and condolence for the people of his country “in the throes of a disastrous tragedy” following the 10 September floods in the city of Derna. He also expressed condolence to the people and Government of Morocco over its recent earthquake. Calling the Libyan floods “a terrible spectacle” and with “torrential rains carrying away a quarter of the city,” he stated that they claimed thousands of lives with people still missing or dead. The National Union Government has gone to great efforts to cope with the disaster by evacuating people, burying the dead, extracting those covered in rubble, and addressing health situations. Thanking countries which have helped with rescue teams and medical and logistical support, responding to Libya’s call, he revealed that “the scale of the disaster has fully surpassed all local capacity.” He appealed to the international community to live up to its responsibility to Libya and help it cope with the aftermaths of the disaster, especially to avoid health disasters being warned of by experts.
Stating that “the greatest values are borne form the greatest sufferings,” he pointed out that since the tragedy, Libyans from far south to far north have set aside political divisions in order to be reborn and transcend wounds of the past, to set course towards the future, and see through the eyes of future generations instead of politicians and merchants of war. This is “a lesson that we need to pass on to our children to avoid repeating the errors” of past generations, he said. He stressed that the Libyan people have set an example through solidarity and unity, national cohesion and responsibility, and that their voices must be heard. Stressing that this symbolized the birth of a new era, he pointed out the need to conduct elections to ensure a unified authority as “it is time for democracy to begin in Libya, grounded in the will of the people, and in sincerity”.
Fatalla Elzuni, Libya’s Minister of Youth, in an address on Thursday to the UN General Assembly, expressed deep sympathy and offered his condolences to Libyans “in the throes of a disastrous tragedy” following the devastating rains and floods that hit the east of the country last week.
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