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EU diplomatic commitment to Libya

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EU diplomatic commitment to Libya

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Europe appears to be slowly reaching common positions on Libya. After France’s top diplomat said Paris and Berlin want the 27 EU states to talk to the people newly in charge in Benghazi, to punctuate a farewell to Colonel Gaddafi, Portugal’s foreign minister, at a meeting in Brussels, underscored this.

Luis Amado said: “The Gaddafi regime is finished, no longer legitimate. Dialogue must begin with the opposition in Tripoli, to obtain a cease-fire as quickly as possible.”

Germany wants Gaddafi gone yet Berlin will only support diplomatic methods to help resolve Libya problems. Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said: “We don’t want to get sucked into a war in North Africa.”

The EU is debating what resources and means to apply in the region. Catherine Ashton, who will attend an Arab League meeting next week, said: “It is very important in anything we do to be clear about what action we take and why, who is best-placed to do what, but to keep the pressure on.”

The European Parliament has asked that the EU make contact with the Libyan Transitional Council with a view to official recognition.