A selection of news relevant to EKD and of press releases of EKD's partner churches and church bodies. News used with permission from Ecumenical News International and other agencies.
Peace Representative Brahms against Military Intervention in Libya
March 11, 2011
Bremen (epd). The representative for peace issues of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD), Renke Brahms, vehemently criticized the military intervention in Libya. In an interview with edp on Friday, Brahms declared, "I consider that, from the standpoint of international law and peace ethics, this action is unjustifiable." He sharply criticized Libyan leader Muammar al-Gaddafi's attacks against his own people and called them inhuman, but "military intervention had unforeseeable consequences, as we know from many cases in the past."
This is especially true in an African Muslim country, said Brahms, who is also the theological representative of the Evangelical Church of Bremen. The situation in Libya is unpredictable. Brahms also considers the imposition of a no-fly zone to be a military measure, "for it cannot be controlled without the destruction of Gaddafi's positions or aircraft."
For Brahms, rejecting military action in no way implies that Europe is standing idle. "The issue is to support - humanitarianly and politically - those in Libya who want change." Refugees whose physical integrity and lives are in danger must be rescued. "In this regard, the southern European countries must not be left to fend for themselves." For decades, Europe benefited from doing business with Libya. "Now the time has come to help people who are fleeing rather drive them back to the Mediterranean.
Brahms also favors political negotiations, "including, if necessary, with Gaddafi." The goals must be change within the country and protecting the population. It is incomprehensible that Europeans for years cultivated ties with the Libyan leader and now refuse all negotiation. "The lack of a coordinated policy on the part of Europe and the unilateral action of some countries is playing into Gaddafi's hands." French president Nicolas Sarkozy, who supports military action, is one example. "That undermines a common position."