NATO Rejects Gadhafi's Offer For Talks

Published on Saturday 30th April 2011

NATO has rejected an offer from Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi for negotiations to end the conflict in Libya. A NATO official said Saturday NATO wants to see actions not words. He said NATO operations will continue as long as civilians in Libya are threatened. Libyan rebels also rejected Gadhafi's call for talks saying the time for compromise has passed.  Rebels from the Transitional National Council said Gadhafi's government has lost all credibility. Earlier Saturday, Gadhafi said in an hour-and-a-half long televised speech that he was ready for negotiations provided that NATO stop its attacks, but said he would not step down from power. Libya says NATO air forces bombed a site near the national broadcast offices while Gadhafi was inside delivering his address. The Libyan government says the bombing shows allied forces are specifically targeting Gadhafi. On Friday, Libya's conflict spilled beyond its borders, as forces loyal to Gadhafi clashed with Tunisian soldiers after chasing rebel fighters across the frontier. The incursion drew a sharp reaction from Tunisian authorities, who summoned Libya's ambassador to protest.Libyan pro-government forces have been trying to reclaim the border crossing, in the western Wazin region, which was seized by rebels last week.Also, NATO said its warships intercepted pro-Gadhafi forces laying anti-ship mines in the harbor of the western, rebel-held city Misrata.  NATO warned Misrata port authorities, who closed the facility, forcing the cancellation of the arrival of two aid ships.The port is the only lifeline for the city of 300,000, which has been under siege for two months.NATO operations commander Brigadier Rob Weighill said the alliance intercepted several small boats Friday.  He said the incident shows what he called Mr. Gadhafi's complete disregard for international law by trying to keep humanitarian aid from being delivered to civilians.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.


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