Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Libya's Gaddafi prepared to leave, says Alain Juppe

France says it has had contacts with envoys from Muammar Gaddafi who say the Libyan leader is "prepared to leave".

"The Libyan regime is sending messengers everywhere, to Turkey, to New York, to Paris" offering to discuss Col Gaddafi's exit, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe told French radio.

But he added that such contacts did not constitute negotiations.

France played a key role in launching Nato-led strikes in Libya, under a UN-mandated mission to protect civilians.

Mr Juppe told France Info radio on Tuesday: "We are receiving emissaries who are telling us: 'Gaddafi is prepared to leave. Let's discuss it.'

"There are contacts but it's not a negotiation proper at this stage."

Mr Juppe did not say who the emissaries were.

French foreign ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said: "These are emissaries who say they are coming in the name of Gaddafi. What is important is that we send them the same message and stay in close contact with our allies on this." (read more)

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