[Marxism] US officials reportedly met with Gadhafi govt,
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
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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