[Marxism] US officials reportedly met with Gadhafi govt,

Fred Feldman ffeldman at verizon.net
Tue Jul 19 07:52:14 MDT 2011

Tuesday, Jul 19, 2011 08:59 ET
U.S. officials reportedly met with Gadhafi govt.
Face-to-face meeting followed on heels of U.S. recognition of Libyan 
rebels, according to AP sources
By JULIE PACE, Associated Press

AP/Tara Todras-Whitehill
Photo caption: A child rests as she holds up a picture of Libyan leader 
Moammar Gadhafi during a rally in the town of Zawiya, Saturday.U.S. 
officials met face-to-face with representatives of Moammar Gadhafi's 
regime last weekend to underscore the Obama administration's commitment 
to seeing the longtime Libyan leader leave power, two U.S. officials 
said. [The size of the rally was estimated by some sources as 10,000.---FF]

The meeting was not a negotiating session and there were no plans to 
meet with the Gadhafi regime again, the officials said. The meeting 
followed a decision Friday by the U.S. and several other nations to 
formally recognize Libya's main opposition group as the country's 
legitimate government, a major boost for the rebel l'movement.

A senior U.S. official traveling with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham 
Clinton in India said the U.S. agreed to meet the Libyans only after the 
U.S. officially recognized the rebels. The meeting followed what the 
official described as several phone calls from Libyan officials that the 
U.S. interpreted as a misguided attempt to repair relations.

The official said the meeting took place Saturday in an unnamed third 
country and brought together three senior U.S. diplomats, including 
Jeffrey D. Feltman, the top State Department official in charge of 
Middle East policy, along with four members of Gadhafi's inner circle. A 
Gadhafi spokesman said the meeting happened in Tunisia.

Both U.S. officials who detailed the meeting said the Obama 
administration's purpose for the session was to deliver a clear and firm 
message that the only way forward in Libya is for Gadhafi to step down. 
The U.S. officials requested anonymity because they were not authorized 
to discuss the meeting publicly.

Gadhafi's regime said the talks were focused on repairing ties between 
the nations. That account was denied by the U.S.

Under the cover of a U.N. mandate, the U.S. took the lead in the 
airstrikes against Libyan forces that began in March to protect Libyan 
civilians from Gadhafi's advancing forces. NATO has since taken the lead 
in the bombing campaign, with the U.S. playing a support role.

Though President Barack Obama has pledged that the Libya campaign will 
not turn into a protracted war, he has said the U.S. will continue its 
involvement until Gadhafi stops attacking his people.

Associated Press reporter Matthew Lee in New Delhi contributed to this 

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