Saturday 16 December 2017

Rebels rule out possibility of talks with dictator

Richard Spencer in Tripoli

Rebel leaders last night rejected the possibility of negotiations with Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, but showed signs of division over how to deal with the regime.

Mustafa Abdel Jalil, leader of the Transitional National Council, said he was giving the Libyan leader 72 hours to leave the country if he wanted to avoid prosecution over crimes committed in office. Other rebels initially gave credence to reports that government negotiators had approached them with an offer that Col Gaddafi would hand over power to an interim council, but later a spokesman said no such offer had been made.

"There has been no contact," said Mustafa Gheriani. "There will be no negotiation with this man. He has committed genocide with aeroplanes and tanks."

Mr Gheriani said there would be no forgiveness for Col Gaddafi. "We will never compromise. We would like him to leave the country to stop the bloodshed. But even if he leaves we will go after him and bring him to justice."

The reports, from several sources, said the proposal had come from Gaddafi advisers who were keen to find a way out of the crisis amid claims of lack of confidence in the loyalty of the army. There have been repeated but unconfirmed rumours of shootings in the central army barracks in Tripoli. A government spokesman also dismissed the chance of a deal. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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