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Namibia’s president condemns strikes on Libya

Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba on Monday strongly condemned foreign military strikes in Libya, saying they were an”interference in internal affairs of Africa.”

“Namibia deplores and regrets the interventions (against Libya) by some EU countries, the US and Canada and the so-called Arab countries under the guise of the Arab League,” said Pohamba, also current chairman of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Pohamba was speaking in Otjiwarongo, some 250 kilometres (155 miles) north of the capital, Windhoek, at celebrations to mark the 21st anniversary of Namibian independence.

“As we celebrate our 21st independence anniversary, our Libyan brothers and sisters are attacked by non-African forces,” he said before starting his official speech.

“Namibia reiterates the decisions of the AU Peace Council and Namibia rejects in the strongest terms any interference in internal affairs of Africa,” he said.

The 53-nation African Union (AU) has said it is opposed to “any kind of foreign military intervention” in Libya and called Sunday for an immediate halt to attacks in the north African country.

Libya supported Namibia during its struggle for independence from South Africa and many Namibian fighters and nurses trained in Libya before it won its freedom in 1990.

Western forces on Saturday launched air strikes aimed at crippling Libya’s air defences and preventing Colonel Moamer Kadhafi’s forces from attacking civilians in a month-old uprising against his rule.

The US military said the operation had been successful in imposing a no-fly zone over the country.  -Sapa-AFP