Vancouver demonstration planned for Saturday in support of Libyan people

Demonstrations are being planned across Canada on Saturday (February 26) in support of protestors in Libya.

Derrick O’Keefe, the co-chair of the Canadian Peace Alliance, said the local rally is a continuation of demonstrations that started last month to support the people of Tunisia.

“In Vancouver, there’s been some kind of rally every Saturday for the last month, as the revolutions and uprisings have spread to Egypt and now Libya and Bahrain and many other countries,” said O’Keefe.

“This Saturday, the focus is on Libya, and we’re just making it clear that people in Canada support the people there”¦who are very bravely fighting against a dictator who is willing to shed an enormous amount of his own peoples’ blood to hang onto power,” he added.

O’Keefe said his organization will be speaking out against the potential for western military intervention in Libya.

“In the last 24 hours especially, there has started to be talk of a sort of western military intervention, or perhaps NATO intervening in Libya, and the Canadian Peace Alliance just wanted to make clear that we would strongly warn against”¦any kind of NATO military intervention,” he said.

The local rally will take place at the Vancouver Public Library at 1 p.m. Demonstrations will also take place in cities across Canada, including Ottawa, Toronto, Windsor, London, Winnipeg and Edmonton.

The secretary general of the United Nations called for “decisive action” on the Libya crisis today (February 25), according to a report from the BBC, while the White House said the United States would move toward imposing unilateral sanctions on the North African country.

According to UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon, more than 1,000 people have died in Libya during a major uprising against Moammar Gadhafi, the country's ruler for the last four decades.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in a statement Friday evening that Canadian officials have been instructed to prepare a full range of sanctions against the Libyan regime, and called on the United Nations Security Council to refer the situation in Libya to the International Criminal Court.

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