Rebels capture Qaddafi's compound and relocate headquarters to Tripoli; experts say public disorder and instability could emerge in Libya after Qaddafi regime falls; Kim Jong-Il meets with Russian president to discuss ending its nuclear weapons programme; Moody's downgrades Japan's economy; Israel claims to have killed Islamic Jihad militant; US markets respond to possible monetary stimulus; and more
Top of the Agenda: Libyans Eye Transition in Tripoli
Libyan rebels captured leader Muammar al-Qaddafi's Tripoli compound Tuesday--aided by months of NATO airstrikes--and moved to relocate their headquarters from Benghazi to the capital. Even as opposition forces solidified their control (WSJ) over the city, Qaddafi released a recorded radio address from an unknown location, urging government loyalists to fight for Tripoli.
Rebels sought to maintain control (CNN) over the Bab al-Azizya compound as Qaddafi loyalists fired mortars at the former government stronghold. Clashes between rebels and government forces also flared just east of Tripoli's main airport.
Meanwhile, the rebel National Transitional Council moved to shore up support for an orderly transition of power. The council's leader, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, said the new Libyan government would hold free elections (al-Jazeera) within eight months. Jalil, one of the first defectors from the Qaddafi regime early this year, said Qaddafi would be put on trial in Libya, rather than in an international court.
Diplomatic efforts (NYT) intensified as France--a leader in NATO's mission to assist the Libyan rebels--announced that President Nicolas Sarkozy would meet with Jalil in Paris tonight. Russia, which opposed the NATO operation, is considering formal recognition of the rebel government.
In narrow military terms, the West's action in Libya has been successful, and there was political justification, says this Guardian editorial.
The NATO campaign in Libya highlighted the weakness of the coalition's European members, says this Financial Times editorial.
As Libyan rebels press for control of the state and the ouster of Qaddafi, experts warn about the troubles ahead in maintaining security and rebuilding a country emerging from forty-two years of autocratic rule, explains this CFR Analysis Brief.
Public disorder and instability in Libya could emerge after the Qaddafi regime falls. The United States should support a stabilization effort to prevent the potential consequences of regime failure, argues Johns Hopkins' Daniel Serwer in this CFR Contingency Planning Memo.
Kim Jong-Il Meets with Medvedev
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il held rare talks in Siberia with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev about North Korea ending its nuclear weapons program (Yonhap) and returning to six-party negotiations. The leaders also discussed ways to strengthen economic cooperation between the two neighbors.
JAPAN: Credit rating agency Moody's downgraded Japan (FT)--the world's third largest economy--by one notch amid concerns over the country's large debt and unsustainable fiscal path.
Israel says it killed Islamic Jihad militant
US markets up in anticipation of monetary stimulus