Calls for intervention against Libya insurgents

A car bomb targeting a graduation ceremony at a military academy in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi left at least eight soldiers dead and over 20 wounded March 17. A second car bomb later exploded elsewhere in the city, killing one person. Libyan Minister of Justice Salah Marghani responded: "Now it is not time for mourning or condemnation. It is about time for Libyans to declare war on terrorists who have been killing Libyans and foreigners in the cities of Benghazi and Derna in eastern Libya. What is going on in Benghazi and Derna is terrorism and we must declare the state of emergency in Benghazi and we fight back. Asking for international assistance in this fight is not violation of Libyan sovereignty. What violates our sovereignty is the killing of these youth in cold blood."

Meanwhile, the North Korea-flagged oil tanker Morning Glory, which departed from a port controlled by rebels in eastern Libya March 12, was intercepted by US Navy SEALS off Cyprus March 16 and turned over the Libyan authorities at Zawia. The crew—consisting of six Pakistanis, six Indians, three Sri Lankans, two Syrians, two Sudanese and two Eritreans—were tranfered to Tripoli for interrogation. (Libya Herald, Tripoli Post, March 22; Tripoli Post, March 18; BBC News, March 17)