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    'Gaddafi has declared war on his own people'

    Washington: The Muammar Gaddafi regime in Libya has lost its legitimacy to rule as it has declared war on its own people, UN Chief Ban Ki-moon said on Tuesday

    "In Libya, a regime that has lost legitimacy has declared war on its own people. It is up to us, the community of nations, to stand against this crime," Ban said in his remarks at the Holocaust Museum here.

    "From Tunisia and Egypt, Bahrain to Yemen and beyond, the region's people are demanding new rights and new freedoms. From the beginning, I have called on leaders in the region to heed the voices of their people, to respect their right of free speech and free assembly," he said.

    "Above all, I have called for non violence. That is why we are here on Tuesday to send a message, to make a stand in the name of humanity," Ban said in his address after he met US President Barack Obama at the White House.

    "President Obama and I discussed options before us. I thanked President Obama for his firm and decisive leadership. We agreed that the international community must stand firmly together during this historic transition toward a more democratic, secure and prosperous Middle East," he said.

    Ban said he would continue to consult widely with world leaders on the next steps. He commended the Human Rights Council for its unanimous recommendation to suspend Libya until the violence stops and welcomed its call for an independent international investigation.

    Ban urged all Member States of the United Nations to act decisively in the General Assembly on Wednesday. "At this critical moment, at this pivotal point in history, let us remember: 'Never again' is for all people, in all places. We must write a new history for humankind," he said.