Political discussions in Paris have reportedly centred on the target of bombing of Libya.
The topic was raised by President Nicolas Sarkozy with his party after he had met members of Libya’s rebel National Council.
France has become the first country in the world to formally recognise the Council. That was followed by British Prime Minister David Cameron joining Sarkozy in calling on European partners to follow.
Despite the Franco-British move, Italy has until now ruled out following and been emphatic on the question of any military action.
“Italy does not want to take part in bombing against Libya. Italy wants a Security Council resolution for a no fly zone, but not the bombing of Libya,” said Franco Frattini, Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs. On the question of Libya’s rebel National Council, he said that a state but not a group can be recognised.
Libya’s Deputy Foreign Minister has questioned the legality of France’s action.
The French move came as NATO said it was planning for all eventualities after some of the fiercest fighting of the three-week-old uprising against Gaddafi.