By Ria Novosti
The ministers of the Cooperation Council of the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) on Thursday called Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s regime illegitimate.
“The Cooperation Council of the Arab States of the Gulf considers the current Libyan regime illegal and urges to set up relations with the [opposition] National Council,” GCC’s ministers said in a statement.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) comprises Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman and the United Arab Emirates.
The Libyan National Council was created by insurgents amid the unrest to govern the country’s eastern territories, where many major cities and towns have been turned into opposition strongholds.
Earlier on Thursday, France formally recognized the rebel Libyan National Council as the only legitimate governing body in the country. The country was planning to send an ambassador to the insurgent stronghold of Benghazi
On Wednesday, the head of the council’s crisis committee called on the European Union to recognize it as the country’s legitimate ruling body.
The council also urged Gaddafi on Tuesday to resign from his post within 72 hours and leave the country, saying that in this case, the council may waive its “right” to the prosecution of Gaddafi’s “crimes of oppression, persecution, starvation and massacres.”
Several international organizations, including the UN and EU have imposed strict sanctions on Gaddafi’s circles and close relatives. The measures include a total arms embargo on Libya, a freeze on Gaddafi’s and his family members’ assets and an entry ban for them to the EU.