Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Gaddafi regime seeks conditions for exit

"Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has suggested he would be willing to step aside if certain conditions were met, according to people familiar with unofficial contacts between the Libyan regime and members of the Nato-led coalition supporting the country’s rebels.
Col Gaddafi’s demands include being allowed to remain in Libya. The parties have also discussed whether International Criminal Court charges against the Libyan leader could be dropped. However, one person close to the coalition said such a highly controversial move would only be examined if the Libyan leader stepped down.

Alain Juppé, French foreign minister, on Tuesday confirmed the contacts, while warning that Colonel Gaddafi’s departure was still far from certain. “It is not today a real negotiation,” he said in a radio interview. “We are receiving emissaries who have told us: ‘Look, Gaddafi is ready to go, let’s talk about it.

People close to the international coalition cautioned that the colonel’s moves could be designed to buy him time rather than strike a deal. The regime, moreover, appears to be insisting that the colonel’s son Seif is allowed to play a role in any post-Gaddafi transition.
“Gaddafi thinks the international alliance is losing patience so he’s making contacts but he’s not serious,” said one person. “Only when the rebels get closer to Tripoli will real negotiations begin"

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