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French defense minister takes U-turn

Posted by seumasach on July 12, 2011

New Kerala

12th July, 2011

Paris, July 12 : Military action against embattled dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is not working and Libyan tyrant must be welcomed to negotiations with pro-freedom rebels, France’s defense minister has said.

Gerard Longuet said hostilities must end urgently and Gaddafi must be welcomed to negotiations table because airstrikes were failing to break the deadlock, the Daily Mail reports.

He also raised the extraordinary possibility of the dictator clinging to power in a bid to thrash out a diplomatic solution, the paper said.

Longuet however, had recently said that NATO will stop their bombardment of Libya as soon as embattled leader Colonel Gaddafi’s loyalists and rebels sit round a table and begin direct negotiations

“We must now sit around a table. We will stop bombing as soon as the Libyans start talking to one another and the military on both sides go back to their bases. We’ve shown there is no solution through force,” said Longuet.

His apparent U-turn has exposed deepening cracks in the NATO-led mission.

A source close to UK Prime Minister David Cameron has insisted, ‘that is not their position and they want Gaddafi to go immediately’.

“Time is not on Gaddafi’s side: the diplomatic, economic and military pressure on his regime continues to build,” said a Foreign Office spokesman.

“Whilst there has to be a political solution, Gaddafi’s brutal actions have stripped him of all legitimacy and he must go immediately,” he added.

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