France claims Muammar Gaddafi is very close to agreeing to step down. Emissaries from the Libyan leader are said to have contacted NATO members indicating that a negotiated end to the conflict is a possibility.
On the other hand, France’s parliament has just voted to extend its participation in NATO operations in Libya despite it costing Paris 160 million euros a day.
“Certainly the breaking point has not yet been reached,” said Prime Minister Francois Fillon, “but now is the time to be firm and it is now that the international community must be steady.”
As the Libyan rebels appear to be making some gains towards the Libyan capital of Tripoli there have now been accusations of beatings and reprisals. Human Rights Watch claims rebels have been guilty of violations as they have captured towns in their fight against Gaddafi loyalists.